Meatless Monday: Caramelized Mushroom Polenta Bites
Happy Meatless Monday and last Monday before Christmas! Usually at this point in the month I am still scrambling around trying to find last minute presents and figuring out when in the world I might actually find a spare second to wrap. This year though, for some strange reason, I have everything under control.
I swear I have been busier this year than any year before but some how I managed to get all my shopping finished and every present wrapped which left me some time to play around with some holiday appetizer ideas for upcoming Christmas and New Year’s Eve parties.
This particular appetizer was inspired by a conversation I had with a friend during a car ride back from a race this past weekend. She was commenting that she had seen an easy recipe for a polenta dish on a running website and said she wanted to give it a try. While the dish she described was more of an actual meal, it inspired me to come up with a recipe for today using polenta.
In all honesty, I have never actually made polenta at home but once I got it in my head I was hell bent on making something work. After some thought I came up with this appetizer variation using ready made polenta topped with caramelized mushrooms and onions sautéed in cabernet and topped with a while stilton cheese with cranberries. Sounds fancy but it’s quick to make and tastes pretty festive!
I typically don’t eat cheese since it bothers me but for the sake of the holidays and pleasin’ all the party people I threw some on there. I don’t have dairy free cheese readily available where I live but if you have access, you could totally top it with Daiya dairy free cheese (they now have cheese blocks, FYI- I just recently discovered this).
The nice part about this recipe is that it doesn’t take a lot of time to make. Since I used ready made polenta (by all means make your polenta from scratch if you’re experienced/have time) it saves a lot of prep. The most labor intensive part of this whole recipe is the effort you have to put into cutting the onion 😉
CARAMELIZED MUSHROOM POLENTA BITES
Makes 8-10 bites.
- 2 tbsp + 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1 8oz carton white mushrooms
- 1/3 cup cabernet sauvignon
- 1 ready made polenta roll sliced into 1/2″ discs
- 1/4 cup crumbled white stilton cheese with cranberries
- fresh thyme
- Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large pan and add onions then cook until transparent.
- Add mushrooms along with wine and sauté until cooked down then set aside.
- Turn oven broiler on high.
- Lightly brush polenta discs with remaining olive oil on each side and line on greased baking sheet.
- Broil for approximately 10 minutes or until crispy.
- Remove from oven and transfer onto paper towel using spatula and blot off excess oil.
- Place each disc onto a serving plate and top with mushrooms, sprinkle with cheese and garnish with thyme.
- Serve and enjoy!
Don’t forget to linkup if you have a meatless recipe to share!
Are you done with your holiday shopping?
Any fun holiday party plans?