Sunday, November 25, 2007

A bed of cheesy polenta for sweet roasted winter vegetables to rest upon...

This year really seems to be flying by with December fast approaching in less than a week! We had a total of 13 recipes this week, however a couple of them were repeats at Thanksgiving. We quite enjoyed the Thanksgiving feast, but I don't think I want to count those in our weekly round up of favorites... so making our end of the week list for this round was the incredible Crunchy Milk Chocolate–Peanut Butter Layer Cake, Beef, Black Bean and Chorizo Chili and the Frozen Pumpkin Mousse Pie (okay... Jeff made me include this last one even though I just said we were not going to include the Thanksgiving recipes!). Oh, and can you believe it? Over the holiday we crossed the 2 millionth visitor mark - wow!

The chilly weather has begun to settle in and we are expecting a wicked cold snap to blow in during the middle of the week (highs in the teens anyone?!). With polenta being one of our new favorite comfort dishes, I thought this Roasted Winter Vegetables with Cheesy Polenta would be a good choice to warm up our stomachs tonight for dinner.

The veggies are prepared first - chunky cream-colored cauliflower florets and cubed pieces of butternut squash are tossed with sliced onions and minced garlic. The veggies are lightly seasoned and drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil - the original recipe called for using garlic powder as a seasoning at this point, but opted to toss in a few chopped fresh cloves instead.

Roasted Winter Vegetables with Cheesy PolentaWhile they roast in a fiery hot oven, the polenta is prepared by cooking cornmeal in flavorful vegetable broth, a bit of water and fresh rosemary. The length of time it will take will vary depending on how coarse your cornmeal is - it took us about the full 25 minutes to get it to the consistency we like. Since it is a cheesy polenta after all, a good handful of fresh grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese is stirred in at the end for a sharp salty punch. To serve, the soft polenta is plated with the tender and golden browned vegetables strewn on top. Roasting the veggies at such a high heat brought out their light natural sweetness and made them the glistening highlight of the dish - however, the savory polenta with that nutty cheese did not fall into the background either and made this dish very filling.


  1. Joe, finally made the Rolled Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Prosciutto and Barley tonight and it was a huge success. Everyone went for seconds. Again thanks for all the great recipes.

  2. Congrats on 2 million!!! Wow!

    The vegetables and polenta look great. I just had polenta, in fact. It's really good, but it has to have cheese in it.

  3. I wish Robin liked polenta, I love it, but alas she hates it. I made the pb cake yesterday for her bday tonight. It was very crumbly when I trimmed the sides. I noticed that it only baked for 30 min as opposed to the 50 min the recipe stated. I tasted the scraps and I much prefer Hershey's black magic cake instead. It uses buttermilk instead of milk and coffee instead of the hot water. Check it out when you get a chance.

  4. Helene - Fantastic!

    Emiline - Thank you!

    Randi - That's odd, ours was very moist and not crumbly at all. The cake was done for us at about 40 minutes and I gave the range of 40 to 50 in the recipe I typed up. I did note in the main post we did about the cake that I would love to try making it with coffee sometime!