Baked Polenta With a Tomato Sauce
This is a very tasty, filling meal. It can be used as a side dish or as a main course. For those following Weight Watchers, the whole recipe provides 16.5 points, assuming you use low fat cheese. Prep time includes time for the polenta to set.
- Ready In:
- 2hrs 40mins
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup quick-cook polenta (yellow cornmeal)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1⁄2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large red onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 (14 ounce) cans chopped tomatoes (14oz=400g)
- 10 leaves fresh basil, finely chopped
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese (or mozzarella)
- plastic wrap (saran wrap or cling film)
- Heat the oven to 350°F or 180°C.
- Pour 3 cups of cold water into a saucepan and turn the heat up to high.
- Add 1 cup polenta/ cornmeal gradually, stirring until it is all mixed in.
- Stir in the paprika and nutmeg.
- Heat until boiling, then simmer for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. NB: The polenta may spit if not stirred so be careful!
- When the polenta has thickened at the end of the 2 minutes, remove from the heat. Line a loaf pan with cling film/ saran wrap and pour the polenta in
- Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 2 hours until solid.
- Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet and cook the onion and garlic, stirring, for 3 minutes until soft.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and fresh basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste then simmer for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, turn the polenta onto a chopping board and remove the cling film. Cut it into about 18 squares. Slices can also be used if they fit your baking tray better.
- Pour a third of the tomato sauce into a baking tray, top with half the polenta squares. Repeat the layers ending with sauce (alternatively I use a large shallow baking tray so I use a single layer of polenta squares with tomato sauce underneath and poured over the top).
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, sprinkle the cheese over the top and return to the oven for 5 minutes until the cheese has melted.