Polenta with Roasted Veggies


Need a new idea for meatless mondays? What about a savory breakfast for dinner?  I had this dish on a trip to Santa Barbara and knew then that I had to make this dish at home.  And the lack of butter and cheese in the polenta isn’t missed due to the creaminess of a runny yolk.  Yum!

poached egg polenta

Polenta with Roasted Veggies
1/2 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 c cornmeal
1 quart broth
2 zucchini, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
2 portobello mushroom caps, diced
4 eggs

In large saucepan heat 2 tbs olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion, garlic, and salt to taste, saute until softened.  Add broth and bring to a boil. Slowly whisk in cornmeal to avoid lumps.  Once all added cover and reduce heat to low, cook for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Add zucchini, bell pepper, and portobello mushroom to a large sheet pan.  Toss veggies with 2 tbs olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roast for 20 minutes, tossing half way through.

Fill a large saute pan with water, and bring to a simmer over medium high heat.  Once up to a simmer turn off heat source and add eggs one at a time separated from each other.  Cover pan and let sit for 5 minutes.

Add polenta to 4 bowls evenly, top with roasted veggies, and using a slotted spoon place 1 poached egg over each portion.


Chicken Cacciatore


A month ago I went to an amazing spice shop in Chicago and found myself some real treasures.  One was some italian seasoning.  It’s the perfect blend of basil, oregano, parsley, garlic, and salt.  I’ve thrown it in sauce, but it made this chicken cacciatore out of this world.  So go to your local spice shop for your own blend and make this recipe tonight.  You will not be disappointed.


Chicken Cacciatore
8 chicken thighs
3 tbs italian seasoning
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
8 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbs tomato paste
2/3 c red wine
2/3 c chicken broth
2/3 c water

Preheat a large dutch oven over medium high heat.  Coat the pot with just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan.  Season chicken thighs with 2 tbs italian seasoning.  Add chicken thighs in 2 batches to the pot.  Let brown on each side, but not cooked through, about 8 minutes.  Remove chicken thighs and set aside.  Add pepper, onion, mushrooms, garlic, and remaining 1 tbs of italian seasoning.  Cook until vegetables start to soften about 3 minutes.  Add tomato paste and stir to incorporate.  Add red wine while scrapping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pot then add chicken stock and water.  Place chicken back in pot, then cover and reduce heat to low.  Cook for 30 minutes, then serve.



Even though labor day has passed, summer is not over.  We still have a few weeks left, so it’s essential that we soak it up and enjoy our summer produce.  To that end, panzanella is what I’m serving.  Unlike most salads this one needs thirty minutes or so once it’s dressed to come together.  Try to be patient, I know it will be tough with this staring you down:

Food 059

4 c leftover french bread or boule chopped into 1-inch cubes
2 tbs olive oil
1/4 tsp garlic powder
4 tomatoes on the vine, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
1 c basil, chopped
1 1/2 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 tbs red wine vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
3 tbs honey mustard

In a large bowl toss bread with olive oil, garlic powder, and salt to taste.  Pour bread into a large skillet over medium heat.  Saute, tossing frequently for 10 minutes or until browned.  Add back to large bowl, and add tomatoes, yellow pepper, red onion, and basil; set aside.  In a small bowl add balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar, olive oil, honey mustard, and salt to taste; whisk to combine.  Pour dressing over salad, toss to combine.  Let sit for 30 minutes for flavors to blend.