Polenta Vegetable Pie

I belong to a group on Facebook called Tasting Table Cookbook Club & this month the cookbook to try is MOOSEWOOD COOKBOOK by Mollie Katzen

This cookbook is from 1992. I think I bought it than, it was new & exciting… recipes that always worked & people really liked…except one I made for some friends ( but that is a long story)

Anyway, I put this book away & it has sat on the shelf for years. I pulled it out & sat & read through it the other day. There are so many fantastic recipes in it. Recipes that I use from other sources… peanut sauce, tahini, soups, etc… I am going to revisit this book more often, so be prepared to see more recipes from it!

This particular recipe, I had want to make years ago but didn’t. A thick cornmeal crust is right up my alley since I love cornmeal.

My grandfather used to eat Mamaliga… cornmeal cooked on the stove, some put onto a plate…spread with butter while it was warm so the butter melted into little pools in the dips of cornmeal… topped with cottage cheese, than salt & pepper…well, I can assure you this is delicious. Murray & I eat this sometimes, but I don’t put the butter on anymore..or if I do, not as much as my grandfather did.  I just looked on the internet & there are recipes for Mamaliga, but my grandfather didn’t use one. I just make the cornmeal without a recipe as well, but you can use the instructions on the back of the package. We usually have some frozen mixed vegetables with it on the side…. tradition I guess… why change something so basic & delicious…

Getting back to the recipe…. a thick baked cornmeal crust…some grated mozzarella cheese .. sliced tomatoes…a pile of sautéed vegetables… more mozzarella cheese… then broiled shortly until brown… this was DELICIOUS!! I think this would be very easy to adapt to your own taste…change the type of sautéed vegetable if you like.. add more cheese…or make it as it is! I did not use as much garlic as the recipe called for, I used more mushrooms but basically I followed the recipe. Time-wise… the crust bakes for 45 minutes, but during that time you make the filling so it all works out!

Here is the recipe… POLENTA PIE… MOOSEWOOD COOKBOOK..By Mollie Katzen

Ingredients

Cornmeal Crust

1 1/2 cups cornmeal

1 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups cold water

2 cups water in a saucepan

olive oil for brushing on the crust before baking

Vegetable Filling

1 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion

1/2 bell pepper

mushrooms… I used about 12

1 small zucchini

1 tsp crushed garlic

1 tsp basil or some fresh basil… I forgot to measure what I used!!!

1/2 tsp oregano

1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese

2 Roma tomatoes…slice the tomatoes … if you don’t; have or like Roma tomatoes, use any tomato you like..you could use 1 big field tomato

 Method

Make the Cornmeal Crust

 Preheat oven to 375f

You will need a pie plate.. grease with non-stick cooking spray

  1. In a bowl, mix the cornmeal, salt & cold water together
  2. Boil the 2 cups of water in a saucepan
  3. When the water is boiling, whisk the cornmeal mixture into the water
  4. Lower the stove temperature to low & cook the cornmeal for 10 minutes
  5. STIR OFTEN SO THE CORNMEAL DOES NOT BURN & STICK TOO MUCH TO THE POT
  6. The cornmeal gets really thick
  7. When it is cooked, remove from heat & let the corn meal cool until you can handle it…it has to go into a pie plate… I did not let it cool too completely & did not handle it with my hands when forming into a crust
  8. When the cornmeal has cooled, appoint out into the prepared pie plate & spread it evenly over the bottom & up the sides of the pie plate, This crust is thick & delicious!
  9. Bake the cornmeal crust for 45 minutes. When it is finished baking, remove from the oven & set aside until ready to fill it

Make the filling while the crust is cooking

You will need a skillet to make the vegetables big enough to accommodate all the mushrooms!

  1. Prepare the vegetables…thinly slice the onion, red pepper, mushrooms & zucchini
  2. If you are using fresh basil, chop it
  3. Now, heat the olive oil in the skillet
  4. Add the onion & cook it until soft.. mine browned some..
  5. Add the red pepper, mushrooms & zucchini & cool until the vegetables are soft & everything is cooked to your liking… Stir often
  6. Add the garlic, basil & oregano
  7. Mix well & cook a bit longer so the spices mix well with the vegetables
  8. There is no salt added to this & I thought it might need it… it was fine without but you could add salt now if you want to

Now, put this pie together  

Put your oven on to Broil

  1. Take the cooked crust & evenly put half of the shredded mozzarella cheese in the bottom
  2. Next, put the sliced tomatoes all over the bottom.. on top of the cheese
  3. Now, add all of the sautéed vegetables
  4. Top the vegetables with the remaining shredded mozzarella cheese
  5. Place the pie under the broiler & broil until this is brown… it took about 6 minutes but watch it!! After all of that prep you would not want to burn this!!!
  6. I cut this in quarters to serve… eat while it is hot….we didnt’t but it was still good!

Enjoy!

 

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. mistimaan says:

    Looks tasty 🙂

    Like

    1. Thanks. I loved it!

      Liked by 1 person

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