Polenta & Pesto

Last week I made some spinach-pesto roll-ups for Ladies Poker Night (yep — I donate $10 a month for some awesome company once a month under the guise of “poker”).  I was a little too shy to take a picture at the host’s house, but here’s the basics.

Place all of the following in a food processor and combine:

4 oz of Neufchatel cheese

3-4 cloves of garlic

8 oz of frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry

1 small onion, diced and sauteed

1/2 cup of feta

1/3 cup of pesto

Spread a layer evenly over a store bought pizza crust.  I used about 1 cup, if that.  Roll up the crust, length-wise, and slice into spirals.  Place spirals on greased cookie sheet and back according to pizza crust directions.

So, I had a lot left over, and I decided to get creative in the kitchen to see how I could use what was in the cupboards, only.  I had no pasta to mix and no more pizza crust.  I then found a bag of cornmeal and decided to make polenta.  In the past I have cooked the cornmeal and made layers with mozzerella cheese, I thought I might as well try this with my pesto, spinach mixture.

This recipe was first made by mom, as found in the Betty Crocker’s International Cookbook.

combine 1 cup of cornmeal with 3/4 c of water in a 2 qt saucepan. Stir to incorporate.  Add 3 1/4 c of boiling water and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens and boils.  Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

I a greased caserole dish, spread about 1/3 of the mixture.  Dot with the leftover spinach-pesto mixture.  Layer another 1/3 of the mixture and dot again with the pesto. Finally top with the last 1/3 of the cornmeal mush.  Bake uncovered for about 15 to 20 minutes at 350.

The 2nd layer of pesto


Almost ready for the oven...

Really, it was quite tasty and quite the comfort food on the shortest day of the year.  I somehow forgot to take a picture of the final piece but you’ll have to take my word for it!


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