Thursday, May 21, 2009

Pan-Fried Polenta with Fresh Tomato-Bean Salsa

This recipe comes from The Tomato Book, which happens to be shaped just like a tomato. I hate to admit this, but I enjoy these cheesy cardboard cookbooks by Publications International, Ltd. Their dumb shapes make me happy, and much like the old Pok√©mon fad, I gotta to catch ‘em all. It helps that the recipes are usually simple, because really, you can only fit so many instructions onto one little page. On brain fried days, I can grab one of these no brainer beauties, pick any recipe, and get cooking in no time.

2 ½ cups chopped ripe tomatoes
1 cup canned cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
½ cup chopped fresh basil
½ teaspoon each salt & black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (16 ounce) package prepared polenta, sliced into ¼-inch-thick rounds
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Stir together tomatoes, beans, basil, salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature 15 minutes to blend flavors. (I added a drizzle of olive oil.)

2. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add half the polenta slices to skillet; cook until golden brown on both sides, about 4 minutes, turning once. Remove polenta from skillet. Repeat with remaining oil and polenta slices.

3. Arrange polenta on a serving plate. Spoon tomato-bean mixture on top. Sprinkle with cheese and garnish with basil.

Makes 4 servings

Notes: For breakfast the next morning, I broke up the leftovers in a skillet, heated them up, poured in a couple seasoned whisked eggs, and scrambled it all together.

Recipe from The Tomato Cookbook. Picture by Laura Flowers.


Sherri Murphy said...

I grew up in an Italian home eating polenta. I love this recipe- I've never tried it. I've enjoyed something similar to the topping, but never tried it over the polenta. I will do it. Thanks.

Marta said...

hahahaha I own a book shaped like a bon-bon and one shaped like a carrot! I also take so much joy out of using them, it's all about the small things that make you smile :)
I love polenta: the cheesier and tomatoier (wow, that's not a word!) it is, the better!

Mary Bergfeld said...

I'm a "love polenta with anything" type of gal. This looks amazing!

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

Basil, tomatoes, parmesan... what's not to love? Confession time, although I grew up in an Italian household, we never ate polenta. Yes, it's true, I was deprived :(.

About your little food shaped cookbooks, haha... I have a Garlic shaped one. I guess I should crack it open sometime and give it a glance.

Don't know if you got my response or not, but the answer to your question is Yes, I'd be honored!! My first name is Patricia.

Take care!

The Cooking Photographer said...

*GASP* You have a garlic shaped one??? I am so jealous now!

La Cuisine d'Helene said...

That would be a great appetizer. This looks so good.

Anonymous said...

Haven't had polenta, i know, i am a hick. Your photos always do it justice, always.
Shaped cookbooks? No way!

Esi said...

I love tomatoes! This is such an easy fresh way to enjoy them. I will have to look up these funny shaped books.

Nina said...

Hello Laura, thank you so much for visits and comments on my blog. Please accept the two awards
that will be perfect for you!...and this dish is fabulous!

Creative Classroom Core said...

You make such tasty sounding dishes! Totally my kind of cooking :) I am so glad that I found your site!

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