I found this recipe on my friend Amy’s blog a while back, and it piqued my interest. It’s cheesy comfort food combined with sauteed hearty greens and works as either a light main course or a substantial side dish. I like recipes that can do double duty.
If you’ve never had polenta, you’re in for a treat. It’s like the Italian version of mashed potatoes: cornmeal cooked into a soft mush and seasoned however you like. Here, it’s combined with Parmesan and goat cheese, and layered with the greens. Bake for 20 minutes and you’re done. If you’re out of chard, use any robust green, like kale or collards, or just use a combination of greens.
Cheesy Polenta with Swiss Chard (from Adventures of a Messy Chef)
2 bunches Swiss chard (about 1 1/2 pounds)
2 tbsp olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp water
1 3/4 cups water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can vegetable broth
1 cup yellow cornmeal
3 ounces crumbled goat cheese
1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
Preheat oven to 400°.
To prepare chard, remove stems and center ribs. Discard stems. Finely chop the ribs and coarsely chop the leaves. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic; sauté 30 seconds. Add chopped chard and saute until slightly soft. Add water and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until wilted.
To prepare polenta, place 1 3/4 cups water, salt, and broth into a large saucepan over high heat. Gradually add the cornmeal, stirring constantly with a whisk. Allow the mixture to boil and immediately reduce heat to medium-low. Cook the polenta for 8 minutes, stirring constantly. Add cheeses, stirring constantly with a whisk. Spoon half the polenta into an 8×8 baking dish coated with cooking spray, spreading evenly. Top with the chard mixture. Spoon sour cream over chard, spreading evenly. Add remaining polenta, spreading evenly.
Bake at 400° for 20 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.