Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sausage, Peppers & Polenta

So, polenta is probably one of those things I would never have eaten when I was younger. I mean…I don’t even like grits*.  So congealed “cornmeal porridge”???  No thank you.


(*Unless served with bacon and a cheese:grit ratio of 1.5:1)

But now that my palate is a bit more refined, I’ve opened my mind (and mouth) to this gluten-free starch alternative.  A while back, I made some red beans & rice & served it up with some pan-grilled polenta instead of rice:

Note my less-than-subtle nod to the “Crescent” City…

If you haven’t experimented with polenta, I highly recommend it.  Especially since, if you’re busy like me, you can buy these shelf-stable pre-cooked rolls of it in various flavors:

If you get the unflavored kind, it serves the same purpose of rice, noodles, or even mashed potatoes.  It has a mild flavor that compliments just about anything.  It also has twice the protein of rice.  One slice of polenta grilled with a small amount of cooking spray has about 50 calories (comparatively, a 1/2 cup of rice has about 100 calories).

So, this go round, I decided to sauté up some smoked sausage & veggies to go with our grilled polenta.  This is a SUPER fast & delicious dinner, ready in about 20 minutes.



Pre-cooked polenta (two 1/2 inch slices per person)

1 lb smoked turkey sausage, sliced into 1 inch pieces

1 bell pepper, sliced into strips

1 onion, sliced into strips (NOTE: You could also easily throw some fresh mushrooms in here. T’would be DEELISH. I , alas, did not have any.  And yes, I’ve been watching too much Sleepy Hollow.)

1/2 tsp crumbled dried rosemary

salt & pepper

olive oil


1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning



Lightly spritz a large frying pan with olive oil using a mister.  Heat pan to medium & add the sausage & veggies.  Season the veggies with rosemary, salt & pepper to taste.  Sauté for 5 minutes & add the garlic & Cajun seasoning.  Cook for another 5 minutes or until the veggies are tender. 



Transfer the sausage & veggies to a bowl & cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. 


Pan-grill your polenta in the same pan, & lightly season the polenta with the oregano.  Let cook for about 2-3 minutes each side, or until lightly browned.  (PS—you can also grill polenta outside to get some tasty smoked flavor)


Top the polenta with your sausage & pepper combo & serve warm!


NUTRIFACTS: (Makes 4 servings) 

Calories 301.0

  Total Fat 10.1 g

  Saturated Fat 3.0 g

  Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g

  Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g

  Cholesterol 60.0 mg

  Sodium 1,001.6 mg

  Potassium 102.2 mg

  Total Carbohydrate 20.9 g

  Dietary Fiber 0.9 g

  Sugars 3.1 g

  Protein 20.7 g

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