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Author Notes: I once dated a guy who said he didn't eat vegetables. Being vegetarian it was a little hard for me to think of something to make him for a dinner date. I went with one of the heartiest dishes I could think of and he loved it! The combination of spice, cheese, veggies and carbs are perfect for chilly date nights :P Note: The polenta does need a few hours to cool so you can do this a few hours to a day before making the stew. - amreen
- 2 cups polenta grains
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups milk
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/2 cup grated cheese of your choice (I like parmesan or gruyere)
- salt to taste
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- oil for pan frying
- In a large sauce pan bring a pot of water to boil.
- Add the polenta, milk and butter. Turn the heat to low and continually stir for 5 minutes.
- Add the cheese and salt and continue to stir for another minute or so. At this point the polenta should be thick enough to resemble a slow lava ... if you scrape the bottom of the pan you should be able to see it before the polenta covers it up again.
- Remove from the heat and place the polenta in a round cake pan (you can use two pans for thinner wedges). Let it cool in the fridge for a few hours.
- Once the polenta has cooled it should be solid, carefully turn it upside down onto a plate and cut it into 8 wedges.
- Heat some oil in a skillet. Beat the eggs.
- Gently dip a wedge of polenta in the egg and then coat it completely with the bread crumbs. Fry the polenta in the oil until crispy brown on each side. Repeat this with all the wedges.
Spicy Eggplant Stew
- 1 large yellow onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 large eggplant
- 1 large zuchinni
- 1 large red bell pepper
- 1 large tomato
- 8 ounces crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- olive oil
- salt to taste
- Dice the eggplant into 1/2 inch cubes. Place them in a colander and salt them in order to get the bitterness out.
- Dice the onion, mince the garlic, cut the zuchini in half lengthwise and then into 1/4 inch pieces, cut the red bell pepper into 1/2 inch pieces. Dice the tomato.
- On medium high heat a large sauce pan and coat the bottom with olive oil.
- Saute the onions for a few minutes until translucent, add the garlic and saute for another minute or two.
- Add the eggplant and mix well. Let the eggplant cook with the onions for a few minutes.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, wine and spices and let simmer for a few minutes.
- Add the red bell pepper and zucchini. Cover and let simmer until the zucchini is a tenderness that you like (I prefer mine still firm so 10 minutes works for me)
- Plate the dish by placing two polenta wedges on top of each other. Top with the eggplant stew. I love to add some extra parmesan on the top ... I mean you can't go wrong with more cheese :P
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Polenta Recipe
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