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Posted on Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 8 a.m.

Gorgonzola polenta with spicy vegetables takes the chill off an autumn evening

By Mary Bilyeu


Mary Bilyeu, Contributor

This is a ridiculously easy dish to make, and very fast to prepare when there's not a lot of time to make dinner. It's rich, sophisticated and nutritious... what a great reward at the end of a long day at work!

Polenta is actually supposed to be cooked slowly, like risotto; but this faster version is still great, especially with the Gorgonzola stirred into it to make it even creamier.

Bright both in color and in flavor, this is a great meal to serve to take the chill off an autumn evening.

Gorgonzola Polenta with Spicy Vegetables

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cups chopped broccoli
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon pesto

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Saute the onion, garlic and red pepper flakes until the onion is translucent. Add the broccoli and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

Stir together the tomatoes, salt and pesto; pour over the broccoli and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
2 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola

Meanwhile, bring the water and the salt to a boil. Turn the heat to low and slowly whisk in the cornmeal. Stir constantly until thickened and creamy, then remove from heat and stir in the Gorgonzola.

To serve: place 1 cup of polenta onto a serving dish, and top with one-quarter of the vegetables. Sprinkle with Parmesan, if desired.

Serves 4.

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Mary Bilyeu has won or placed in more than 60 cooking contests and writes about her adventures in the kitchen. She was thrilled to have her post about Scottish Oatmeal Shortbread named as one of the daily "Best of the Blogs" by the prestigious Food News Journal.

Go visit Mary's blog — Food Floozie — on which she enthuses and effuses over all things food-related. Her newest feature is Frugal Floozie Friday, seeking fun and food for $5 or less ... really! Feel free to email her with questions or comments or suggestions:

The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured in this post) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers as they cook along with her ... may you always be happy here.



Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 2:41 p.m.

Sounds yummy, except that is a very long time to cook broccoli.

Mary Bilyeu

Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 3:03 p.m.

I don't like broccoli too crunchy, so I cook it a bit longer than most would and let it soak up the tomato juices. You're welcome to just toss it in at the end - it will be yummy either way ... :) I hope you enjoy it!