So, this is the dish that finally won my husband over when it comes to polenta. Up till now I've been the only one in the house who liked it and as such never got to have it that much, as you can see, this is the first polenta dish on the blog! To be fair I could probably add sizzling garlic butter mushrooms to any dish and he'd be won over but I'm glad it was this one ;-) It took a couple goes to get the quantity of polenta right here and to learn how to get the grill marks without the polenta sticking like glue to the pan (patience, you just need patience!) But it's all come together now. The crispy fried polenta with that garlic butter soaking in is heavenly, and don't be too alarmed by the amount of vegan butter in this, it's actually still a calorie wise dish :-)
Pan Grilled Chive Polenta Wedges with Sizzling Garlic Mushrooms
Serves 4 as a light meal.
600ml vegetable stock
2 Tbsp fresh chives, chopped (or 4 tsp dried)
400g whole mushrooms
80g vegan butter
4 cloves garlic, pureed
1/2 tsp dried parsley or 1 tsp chopped fresh
salt and pepper
(Note - you will need to follow the instructions on your pack of polenta here as they vary wildly. The polenta I use is a "quick cook" variety, ready in 1 minute for soft or 5 minutes for firm polenta. I'll give the instructions for mine anyway in case you have the same type, otherwise just follow package instructions adding the chives during simmering. As for the vegetable stock, I use Marigold Vegan Organic Bouillon and add 2 1/2 tsp to the 600ml water.)
Mix the polenta and chives together. Bring the vegetable stock to the boil then add the polenta in a slow steady stream, whisking all the while. Once all is added, swap to a wooden spoon and stir all the while for 5 minutes. Transfer to an 8" round cake tin that has been greased with olive oil and press in well using a square of baking paper. Put aside to set for about 1/2 hour.
Preheat the oven to 200C. Remove the stalks from the mushrooms but keep (I now roughly chop these as well). Arrange the mushroom caps in an oven safe dish and scatter the stalks around. In a small bowl mix together the vegan butter, garlic, parsley and a couple grinds of salt and pepper. Fill the mushrooms caps with the butter mixture and dot any extra around. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes giving the dish a shake a couple times. If at any point the mushrooms are looking dry, dot a few blobs of butter around the dish - the water content in mushrooms can vary hugely and I sometimes have to do this.
Back to the polenta: run a knife around the edges of the tin then turn over onto a chopping board and tap the bottom, the polenta should pop out. Slice into 8 wedges. Note - you can wrap up the wedges now and refrigerate to fry up when you like.
Preheat a grill pan till hot then brush the wedges on top generously with olive oil. Place oil side down onto the hot pan and grill. Now. This takes longer than you think it will, if you are impatient and try to flip the wedges you'll find they stick to the pan. Just wait until the grill marks form a crust then they should be easy to flip, although, you still may need to loosen them slightly with a knife. (Alternatively, if you are not fussed about grill marks, you can just fry these in a greased non-stick frying pan with no stickage at all!)
Place 2 of the wedges onto a plate then place some of the mushrooms over top and scatter some of the stalks. Spoon some of the garlic butter left in the pan and drizzle over the wedges. Serve with a lemon wedge and some fresh parsley. Squirt the lemon wedge over the dish just before eating, it goes lovely with the flavours in this.
Nutritional Information: based on 1 serving
Sat Fat: 2.7g
Sodium: 752mg (will depend on stock used)
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