Thursday, April 3, 2008

Polenta Lasagna with Roasted Vegetables

I know it says polenta in the title, but I actually just used cornmeal. While I like the heartier texture of polenta, I never did like having to cook it for 20 minutes. Cornmeal cooks in a jiffy and has pretty much the same taste. Tomatoes and polenta go very well together, and roasting the other veggies adds a wonderfully smoky and sweet flavour to the whole dish.


INGREDIENTS
- 6 cups water
- 3 cups cornmeal
- 1-2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp parsley
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/4 cup margarine
- 6 cloves garlic, roasted, chopped
- 2 cups frozen corn
- 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 8 oz thickly sliced mushrooms
- 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
- 1/2 jar pasta sauce, plus 1/2 cup
- 1 yellow pepper, roasted, sliced
- 1 red pepper, roasted, sliced
- olive oil for brushing
- vegan mozzarella cheese

METHOD:
1. Bring water to boiling in a large pot. Add salt and spices to the water, then whisk in cornmeal. When cornmeal has thickened, remove from heat and mix in margarine and nutritional yeast with a spoon. Working quickly, spread cornmeal mixture as thinly as possible on 2 cookie sheets (or one large sheet). Set aside to cool. When cool, slice into 9 strips.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees
2. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat. When hot, dry roast corn until it beings to lightly brown. Add in cherry tomatoes and mushroom, stirring constantly, until mushrooms begin to brown and soften. If veggies are sticking, add a few tbsp of water. Add in tomatoes and pasta sauce and bring to bubbling. Add in roasted pepper slices.
3. Spread extra 1/2 cup of pasta sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish. Place 3 strips of polenta over the sauce, and top with 1/2 of the tomato mixture. Repeat with 3 more strips and the other half of the sauce. Top with 3 more polenta strips, and brush lightly with olive oil. Top with vegan cheese.
4. Bake for 35-45 mins, or until bubbling and the cheese has melted.