A Simple Weeknight Recipe for Garden Produce

http://www.motherearthliving.com/the-good-life/a-simple-weeknight-recipe-for-garden-produce.aspx

Consider this blog a sneak peek of the upcoming September/October issue, because I’m already using tips from it in my kitchen. In that issue, we included simple recipe ideas for eating the plethora of veggies our gardens start pumping out at this time of year. Of course no one in my house is complaining about too much fresh, homegrown produce, but sometimes you need ideas for veggie-full meals that are easy to whip up on a weeknight. Enter our brilliant regular contributor Barbara Pleasant. This “recipe” is a jumping-off point for a lot of dishes (I’ve already made a Mexican-style version with oven-roasted Anaheim peppers after making this one, but I digress…).

Polenta with Garden Produce

Start by whipping up a batch of corn grits, also known as polenta (ground corn is the only ingredient). I used Bob’s Red Mill’s White Corn Grits. You simply add the grits to boiling water and stir. It’s done in mere minutes.

polenta greens

These are the veggies sautéing.

Meanwhile, I started on the veggies I wanted to cook: I had on hand onions, garlic, mushrooms and some Swiss chard. I sautéed those together in a pan.

polenta tomatoes

Then I spread a thick layer of the cooked grits into a very well-oiled cake pan and topped it with a layer of marinara. Then I added some veggies I didn’t plan to cook: I had roasted red peppers and a bunch of heirloom tomatoes I roughly chopped.

polenta going into oven

Finally, added my sautéed veggies, topped with cheese, and put into a 400-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until bubbly. Delicious, incredibly easy and almost entirely veggies!

Here's the finished product!

polenta out of oven   polenta in bowl