Polenta Pie With Sauteed Vegetables and Pine Nuts

By • April 30, 2013 • 0 Comments



Author Notes: This is not strictly a pizza, but it sure is very Italian -- delicate polenta crust topped with a blend of sauteed spinach, pancetta, shallots, gorgonzola, pignoli, and sweet pepper strips. Full flavored, yet delicate.Eat Already!

Serves 6

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup yellow corn meal
  • 4 ounces Pancetta, diced
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, slivered
  • 3 ounces Gorgonzola, or more if you are a cheese junkie
  • 1/2 pound baby spinach
  • 1 bright colored sweet bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 handful pignoli (pine nuts)
  1. Make polenta first. In a saucepan, bring water, milk, 1/4 olive oil and salt to a boil. Reduce heat immediately, and pour in the corn. Stirring very frequently, simmer corn for about 15 minutes, until very thick.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment, and drizzle a bit of olive oil on it. Spread polenta on the sheet evenly, to about 1/2? thickness, and shape into a circle, just like a pizza crust. Let cool until nicely set.
  3. Heat the oven to 425F. Sprinkle polenta crust with freshly ground pepper, and bake for 30 minutes, until nicely browned around the edges. Keep the oven on.
  4. While crust is baking, prepare the toppings. In a skillet, heat 1 tbsp olive oil. Saute pancetta, shallots and garlic for about 7-8 minutes, until nicely golden and very fragrant. Don’t overcook.
  5. Remove the pancetta topping into a bowl and set aside.
  6. Heat a bit more oil in the same skillet and saute baby spinach until wilted and dark green, for about 3 minutes or so. Again, remove the spinach and set aside.
  7. Add pepper slices and saute for a couple of minutes until they are nicely wilted, for about 3-4 minutes.
  8. Layer your toppings atop polenta crust, starting with cheese crumbs, followed by pancetta mix, spinach, peppers, and finally pine nuts. Arrange everything in a pretty way. Drizzle just a few drops more of olive oil, and put back in the oven for 4-5 minutes.
  9. Slice like a pizza or cut into 3 inch squares. Serve immediately.
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