I found this recipe from one of my favorite vegan blogs “Fat Free Vegan” and made this dish for a dinner party we hosted with some friends. They are all meat eaters and all loved this dish! At least, that’s what they told me I have never made polenta before and have been wanting to for some time now. I love anything with mushrooms in it and have been craving kale. The lasagna turned out very good but there are definitely things I would do different next time. The consistency wasn’t what I hoped for and could have had more of the kale/mushroom mix.
Here is what it looks like when it first came out of the oven
I altered the recipe a bit from the original.
Polenta Lasagna with Portabellas and Kale
1 18-ounce package prepared polenta or 1 recipe of Quick Microwave Polenta (THIS WAS MY BIGGEST PROBLEM. I THOUGHT I COULD MAKE IT FROM SCRATCH . IF I WOULD HAVE MADE IT FIRST AND LET IT SIT TO HARDEN I WOULD HAVE BEEN OK)
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 large portabella mushroom (about 2 cups, chopped) (ADD MORE MUSHROOMS NEXT TIME)
4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 bunch kale, center rib removed and chopped into bite-sized pieces (ADD MORE KALE NEXT TIME)
1 teaspoon dried basil
salt and pepper to taste
Cheese sauce (below)
1 1/4 cups marinara sauce (ADD MORE SAUCE NEXT TIME AND MIX IN WITH THE REST OF THE “CHEESE” MUSHROOM, KALE MIXTURE)
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
vegan soy parmesan
1/2 cup extra-firm silken tofu
1/2 cup unsweetened soy milk
1/2 cup vegetable broth
2 tbsp. cashew butter or tahini
1 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp. salt (optional)
1/8 tsp. white pepper
2 tsp. corn starch
Preheat oven to 375° F. Spray the bottom and sides of a 8×8-inch baking dish with non-stick spray and set aside.
Place the cheese sauce ingredients into a blender or food processor and puree until completely smooth. Set aside.
Sauté the onions and portabellas in a non-stick skillet until the mushrooms begin to exude their juices. Add the garlic and sauté for one more minute.
Add the kale, basil, and 1/4 cup water. Sauté until the kale is wilted and tender and the water has evaporated. Add the cheese sauce and cook, stirring, until thickened. Check seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed. Remove from the heat.
Line the bottom of the baking dish with the polenta. Spread 1/2 cup of the marinara sauce over the polenta, and then spread the kale mixture over the sauce. Sprinkle the chopped olives over the kale and top with the remaining polenta. Spread the remaining marinara sauce over the top and sprinkle with soy parmesan.
Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 or 10 minutes before serving. (I WOULD LET IT COOL FOR 15-20 MINUTES BEFORE SERVING)
Makes 6 servings—if you can resist eating the whole pan yourself!
Since the polenta wasn’t firm, the consistency wasn’t what I expected. The important thing is that it was full of flavor and tasted yummy! Cooking can be trial and error but also half the fun
Remember; be good to your heart and cook often! Keep your mind, body and spirit healthy and strong.