Friday, April 17, 2009

Budget Meal 4: Polenta "Lasagna" and Salad

This recipe has appeared in my blog before but it is good enough to get a second mention. I created this a few years back and still make it from time to time, especially now that Ella is unable to eat wheat. Pair it with your favorite green salad and maybe some fruit for dessert and you got yourself and easy, delicious, budget friendly meal!

Polenta Casserole

1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 bag of sliced crimini or brown mushrooms
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 large can of chopped tomatoes
1 large can of tomato sauce
teaspoon of salt, dash of pepper, pinches of basil & oregano
2 tubes of prepared polenta
1 package of marscapone cheese
2 packages of sliced fresh mozzarella (Trader Joe's)
Grated Parmesan cheese, approx. 1/4 cup

Cook onion in olive oil over medium heat until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic. Cook until mushrooms are done, another 5-7 minutes. Add tomatoes and sauce. Season with salt, pepper, basil and oregano. Cook for about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, slice polenta into 1/2 inch rounds. Heat a medium sized, fry pan. Pour in approx. 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Cook polenta slices until edges are slightly crisp, approx. 3 minutes per side. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.

Oil a rectangular baking dish. Pour approx. 1/2 cup of the sauce into the bottom. Layer the bottom of the dish with the cooked polenta rounds. Top each round with a dollop of marscapone and a slice of mozzarella, and top with another polenta round. Cover "sandwiches" with remaining sauce. Layer remaining mozzarella over sauce and sprinkle with Parmesan.Bake covered in a 375 degree oven for 15 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking for another 10 minutes or until the cheese is brown and bubbly. Serve hot.

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