Monday, December 16, 2013

Baked Polenta Cakes with a Savory Vegan Mushroom/Swiss Chard Sauce and Roasted Tomatoes

Rich, savory and creamy are not typical words to describe a vegan dish.  But, guess what?  It is possible to create tasty dishes that are rich tasting without the cream, butter and dairy.  Best part is, you eliminate all the hormones and toxins that are in animal products and animal bi-products.

Polenta is a quick and easy Italian "porridge-like" dish that can be baked, grilled or fried.  You can buy it premade in tubes, but of course, I prefer making everything myself.  I usually find it pretty bland, but I tweaked it a bit to be more appealing.  By adding some seasoning and salt/pepper to the mixture made a world of a difference!

It is also great to soak up all that yummy, drool worthy sauce!

 I like to add roasted tomatoes to rich dishes like this because it cuts through the savory and rich sauce and brightens up the dish! 

Baked Polenta Cakes with a Savory Vegan Mushroom/Swiss Chard Sauce

Ingredients/Directions for Polenta:
2-3/4 c water plus Edward & Sons Beefless Bouillon Cube
1 c corn meal
1 c cold water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp italian seasonings
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp pepper

Bring 2-3/4 water + bouillon to boil, making sure that the cube has disintegrated.  In meantime, add cold water and corn meal together and mix thoroughly.  Once water is boiling, carefulling whisk in cornmeal mixture, removing all clumps.  Turn to medium and continue to whisk on and off for about 10-15 minutes.  Be careful because this does start to bubble and splatter.  Remove from heat and transfer to a 9 in pie pan.  Allow to cool for 30 minutes and then transfer to refrigerator for an hour.

Preheat oven 350 and bake for 25 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes.  With a mold, cut out cakes to desired shape

Ingredients/Directions for Sauce:  (yields 2 servings)
2 vine ripe tomatoes cut into pieces
2 tbsp evoo divided
2 garlic cloves minced
1/4 red onion sliced
3/4 c sliced mushrooms
1/2 c torn swiss chard
 1/2 c beefless broth
3/4 c original and unsweetened almond milk
2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp dry white wine

Preheat oven 425.  In baking dish, lightly oil tomatoes and season.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.
In meantime, heat evoo in large saute pan and saute garlic and onions for 3 minutes.  Add in mushrooms and saute an additional 3-5 minutes (add in more evoo if need be).  Slowly stir in broth and almond milk, 1/4 c at a time until gone.  Add in white wine and  bring to boil then lower heat.  Whisk in flour and nutritional yeast and continue to whisk until smooth.  Lastly, add in the swiss chard, right before you are ready to serve.  Just cook the chard to the point where they wilt.

Gently pour over your polenta cakes.

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