Tag Archives: tomatoes

21 August 2018: Sweet Corn Polenta with Bell Pepper & Tomato Salad

2018-Aug-16_Fournightsaweek_2602The July/August 2018 issue of Eating Well has, as you might expect, some terrific recipes taking advantage of summer harvests. This recipe from Julia Clancy, a recipe developer from EatingWell,  is a perfect example. Is there anything better than a hot-off-the-vine tomato? I don’t think so.  

I’ve been intimidated by making my own polenta for a while. This week, finally, I gave this recipe a try, and I have to admit the difference is amazing! I’ll be hard-pressed to buy the ready-made products from now on. 

The only “downside” to this recipe is that it takes quite a while to complete – the polenta cooking and cooling period is about 3 hours total.  I made the polenta ahead of time, marinated the salad together in the refrigerator and, since we were having one of those unpredictable dinner times, assembled everything in about 20 minutes. This is definitely a great meal to prep ahead of time and put together later.

Served with a crisp, dry rose, this was a terrific mid-summer vegetarian meal.

Sweet Corn Polenta with Bell Pepper & Tomato Salad by Julia Clancy

Ingredients

For the Polenta:

  • 5 cups water
  • 1 cup coarsely ground cornmeal or polenta
  • 1 cup corn, fresh or frozen
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (please, not the canned dust!)
  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt

For the Salad

  • 2 medium red and/or yellow bell peppers, halved & seeded
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
  • 3 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 TBSP red-wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 TBSP chopped FRESH herbs (basil, mint and/or tarragon)

Method:

  1. To prepare polenta: Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat to low and gradually add cornmeal, whisking constantly to prevent clumping. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the polenta is creamy and reduce to about 4 cups (50 or 60 minutes). If the mixture is too stiff, loosen with 2 TBSP water.
  2. Add corn, Parmesan, butter, pepper and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cheese is melted and the corn is tender – about 5 minutes. Coat a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Pour in the polenta and let cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm – about 2 hours or up to 1 day.
  3. To prepare the salad: Position a rack in upper third of oven; preheat broiler to high. Place peppers cut-side down on a baking sheet (I lined with foil). Broil, rotating the pan once, until softened and charred – 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let steam for 10 minutes. Rub off blistered skin and coarsely chop the peppers. Combine with tomatoes, 2 TBSP oil, vinegar and salt in a medium bowl.
  4. Position a rack in upper third of oven; preheat broiler to high. Cut the polenta into 12 squares and place on baking sheet. Brush both sides of the polenta with the remaining 1 TBSP oil. Broil, turning once until golden brown – 3 to 5 minutes.
  5. To serve: Arrange the polenta and tomato salad on a large serving platter and top with herbs.

To make ahead: Prepare up to Step 4; refrigerate polenta and salad separately for up to 1 day. Serve salad at room temperature.

Advertisements

30 July 2012 Grilled Peppers Piedmontese

Have you ever noticed how your weekly food bill creeps up when you don’t menu plan?  In addition to changing the way we are eating so that we’re more conscious of hormonal carbs, this week I was inspired to do more meal planning when we realized our food bills were getting out of control.  This recipe from the Boston Globe Sunday magazine seemed a good fit for an interesting side –

Copyright © 2012. Adrien Bisson Photography.

and at 6.9 grams fat and -58.8 hormonal carbs (yes!) it’s right on target for eating metabolically. We served with a lean boneless skinless chicken breast which shared the grill and was simply seasoned with salt and pepper.

 

 

Grilled Peppers Piedmontese

Adapted from Reid, Adam. Out of the oven, onto the grill. The Boston Globe Magazine. July 29, 2012. p 16.

Copyright © 2012. Adrien Bisson Photography.Globe Magazine. (July 29, 2012). p 16.

Ingredients:

1 dry pint grape tomatoes (halved)
4 garlic cloves, minced
8 anchovy fillets, chopped
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil plus extra for drizzling if wanted
Salt and black pepper
3 TBSP chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
3 red bell peppers, halved lengthwise through the stem, membranes and seeds removed.

Method:

In a medium bowl, mix the tomatoes, garlic, anchovies, 2 TBSP oil, 1/2 tsp salt, black pepper to taste, the parsley and half of the basil.

Prepare a medium fire charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill on high for 15 minutes (if using gas, adjust burners to medium).

Grill the peppers open sides down until the edges char (6-8 minutes). Turn the peppers, divide the tomato mixture among them, cover the grill and grill until peppers are tender but not collapsed, 15 to 20 minutes.

Arrange the peppers on a platter and drizzle with oil (I didn’t) and sprinkle with the remaining basil just before serving hot, warm, or at room temperature.

Serves 6.  PER SERVING: 328 calories. Total fat 6.9 grams, Total carbs 4.7 grams, Fiber 1.1 grams, Protein 62.4 grams.


22 Aug 2011 Summer Panzanella

Adapted from: Moosewood Collective. Simple suppers: fresh ideas for the weeknight table. (2005). New York: Clarkson Potter. p 108.

My Comment: This is one of my favorite parts of the summer – when all

Summer Panzanella

Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson

 the tomatoes ripen at the same time 🙂 Not only do I have some heirloom tomatoes growing in my own garden, but we received some delicious orange-colored cherry tomatoes from our CSA and our neighbor shared some yellow and red cherry tomatoes too. What’s a cook to do except locate a tomato-friendly recipe and use them all up!

Ingredients:

1/2 loaf of crusty French or Italian bread (about 8 oz) (I used 1/2 of this amount)
4 tomatoes (see note above)
1 large ball of fresh mozzarella (about 5 oz)
1/2 red onion
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
1 cup pitted olives (used Kalamata)
1 TBSP red wine or cider vinegar
1 TBSP olive oil
salt and pepper (fresh ground)
Optional: extra vinaigrette

Method:

1.  Preheat the oven to 350. Cut the bread in half lengthwise and place in the oven until crisp – 5 to 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare the other ingredients and place them in a serving bowl: Cut to tomatoes and fresh mozzarella into 1/2-inch cubes (about 4 cups of tomatoes and 1 cup of mozzarella), peel and thinly slice the red onion, cut the basil leaves into thin strips and chop the olives.

3. Add the vinegar and oil to the bowl and toss well.

4. Cut the toasted bread into 1-inch cubes (7 to 8 cups). Add the bread cubes to the bowl and toss well. Let the salad sit for at least 10 minutes to allow the bread to soak up some of the juices. Add salt and pepper to taste (pass extra viniagrette on the side – but we found it didn’t need any extra dressing).

Serves 4.  Nutrition information: Calories 282, Fat 15.3 g, Carbs 23.9, Fiber 3.6


24 Jun 2011 Bread and Tomato Soup

Adapted from Oliver, J. Bread and Tomato Soup. Downloaded from the web on 24 June 2011. 

Tomato and Bread Soup

Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson.

My Comment: While it is still too early for farmer’s market tomatoes here in New England, there are still good sources available for fresh and canned tomatoes to use in this recipe. Besides, I had some bread to use up 🙂 Besides being warming and very fresh tasting, I like this recipe because of its simplicity. Never mind that the proportions are metric (a little brain work is good for you!). Enjoy it now and then create it again when the tomatoes are perfectly ripe right off the vine.

Ingredients

500 g cherry tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
a large bunch of fresh basil, leaved picked, stalks finely chopped (separate the stalks from the leaves)
high quality extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
2 400-g (14 oz) tin (that’s cans to us) plum tomatoes
500 g or 2 large handfuls of stale good-quality bread (I used some leftover ciabatta)

Method

1. Prick the cherry tomatoes with a fork and toss with one clove of garlic and about a quarter of the chopped up basil. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put in a roasting tray and cook in the over at 180 c (350 F) for 20 minutes.

2. Heat a glug (Jamie’s term!) of olive oil in a pot and add the remaining garlic and basic stalks. Stir around and gently fry for a minute until softened. Add the canned tomatoes then fill at least one can with water and add that also (you may want to consider adding more water if the soup seems to thick). Break up the tomatoes with a spoon, bring soup to a boil and simmer 15 minutes.

3. Tear the bread into thumb-sized pieces and add them to the pot. Add the torn basil leaves, let the bread sit on top of the soup mixture at low heat for 10 minutes. By this time the cherry tomatoes will have finished roasting — pour them (basil leaves, tomatoes, juices and all) into the soup pot.

4. Give the soup a good stir — you are looking to achieve a thick, silky porridgy texture. Remove from heat, add an additional 6-7 TBSP of olive oil and divide between 4 bowls — garnish with additional basil leaves if you want.

Serves 4.


%d bloggers like this: