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! 

Caramelized Mushroom Polenta Bites.  Crispy baked polenta rounds topped with caramelized onions and mushrooms sauteed with cabernet, white stilton cranberry cheese and garnished with thyme.  Gluten free, vegetarian with vegan option.  Perfect for holiday and New Year's Eve parties.

 

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). 

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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.  Crispy baked polenta rounds topped with caramelized onions and mushrooms sauteed with cabernet, white stilton cranberry cheese and garnished with thyme.  Gluten free, vegetarian with vegan option.  Perfect for holiday and New Year's Eve parties.

 

Caramelized Mushroom Polenta Bites.  Crispy baked polenta rounds topped with caramelized onions and mushrooms sauteed with cabernet, white stilton cranberry cheese and garnished with thyme.  Gluten free, vegetarian with vegan option.  Perfect for holiday and New Year's Eve parties.

 

Caramelized Mushroom Polenta Bites.  Crispy baked polenta rounds topped with caramelized onions and mushrooms sauteed with cabernet, white stilton cranberry cheese and garnished with thyme.  Gluten free, vegetarian with vegan option.  Perfect for holiday and New Year's Eve parties.

 

CARAMELIZED MUSHROOM POLENTA BITES


RECIPE

Makes 8-10 bites. 

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 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 

 

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large pan and add onions then cook until transparent. 
  2. Add mushrooms along with wine and sauté until cooked down then set aside.
  3. Turn oven broiler on high. 
  4. Lightly brush polenta discs with remaining olive oil on each side and line on greased baking sheet. 
  5. Broil for approximately 10 minutes or until crispy.   
  6. Remove from oven and transfer onto paper towel using spatula and blot off excess oil. 
  7. Place each disc onto a serving plate and top with mushrooms, sprinkle with cheese and garnish with thyme.  
  8. Serve and enjoy! :) 

Don’t forget to linkup if you have a meatless recipe to share! 

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Let’s chat!

Are you done with your holiday shopping? 

Any fun holiday party plans?


This post is also linked up with Tina Muir and Confessions of a Mother Runner for Meatless Monday.

 

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aelicatese
About me

Annmarie is a self proclaimed foodie, avid long distance runner and functional fitness coach. A DVRT Master Trainer, HKC Instructor and food allergy sufferer, she writes about strength training for runners as well as shares allergy friendly recipes for busy athletes.   She is also the owner of Strength In Motion Studio, mother of two sassy sisters and wife to a chronically busy chiropractor.   Subscribe by email for updates to get the latest workouts, advice and recipes straight to your inbox!

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39 Comments

jill conyers
Reply December 21, 2015

I had a polenta recipe last night. I love everything about this recipe. The flavor combination sounds wonderful.
jill conyers recently posted...Make Time for Fitness 3 Circuit WorkoutMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Thank you! :)

Carla
Reply December 21, 2015

I never think about the fact there's READY MADE when I inmediately tell myself polenta anything is too challenging for me.

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    My goal is to try to make polenta from scratch next time!

Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy
Reply December 21, 2015

Polenta is one of those things that I LOVE, but I really don't use enough of in my kitchen. This looks delicious with the mushrooms on top.
Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy recently posted...Comment on Gingerbread Honey Hot Chocolate by Tara LadeMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Thank you!

Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
Reply December 21, 2015

Polenta is so good! One of those things I always have in the pantry! (But not the already made), just the uncooked corn!

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    I need to experiment with making it from scratch!

jennifer
Reply December 21, 2015

Oh yay, I needed an idea for some poletna in my pantry :-)

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Yay! Hope you get the chance to give this a try!

Susie @ SuzLyfe
Reply December 21, 2015

I don't often have polenta (usually it is done with too much butter and such for my system), but I always enjoy it when it is done right. Love the idea of creating polenta crackers!
Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted...Hand Bikes and Holiday Desserts Quality ControlMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    I don't eat it often but it is pretty yummy!

Julie @ Running in a Skirt
Reply December 21, 2015

What a great idea to use the packaged polenta to make this! So yummy! I love anything with mushrooms!
Julie @ Running in a Skirt recently posted...Haleakala Volcano Sunrise and the Upcountry of MauiMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Thank you! :)

Deborah @ Confessions of a Mother Runner
Reply December 21, 2015

Oh yum! I have a few polenta recipes too that I love time to pull them out. Thanks for linking up with us for Meatless Monday
Deborah @ Confessions of a Mother Runner recently posted...Raisin Pumpkin BreadMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Thanks so much for hosting!

Mary Ellen @ VNutrition
Reply December 21, 2015

These are beautiful! And look so tasty as well!
Mary Ellen @ VNutrition recently posted...Meatless Monday: Quick Cheesy Sauce for VeggiesMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Thank you so much! :)

Chaitali
Reply December 21, 2015

Yum, these look so pretty! I love the addition of the cranberry stilton, it seems like it makes the dish extra festive.
Chaitali recently posted...Rock and Roll DC Half Marathon training - week 2My Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    It definitely does :)

Christine @ Love, Life, Surf
Reply December 21, 2015

These look amazing! I recently made polenta for the first time - totally thought it would be more complicated than it was. These look amazing! Can't wait to try this recipe.
Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted...8 Stress Busting Tips for Busy and Hectic TimesMy Profile

    aelicatese
    Reply December 21, 2015

    Yay! Hope you enjoy! :)

Ivanna
Reply December 21, 2015

Looks yummy. I have never had polenta before sounds like a creative recipe.
Ivanna recently posted...Our Weekend in Review 12/19/15: Purple Door CoffeeMy Profile

Ashley @ Fit Mitten Kitchen
Reply December 21, 2015

Oh I have not ever made anything with polenta before but this looks GREAT. My family actually does an appetizer spread for dinner instead of annual ham and all that jazz. Gah so many appetizer recipes to choose from!
Ashley @ Fit Mitten Kitchen recently posted...Kale and Feta Egg BakeMy Profile

Mary Beth Jackson
Reply December 21, 2015

This is an appetizer I can make! I like that you started with store bought polenta- party easy!
Mary Beth Jackson recently posted...Finally a good workout!My Profile

Crystal Renaud
Reply December 21, 2015

Love mushrooms! I am a big fan of portabello mushrooms and we almost always have those in the house. I may have to try this and substitute. Both the hubby and O love mushrooms!
Happy Holidays friend!!
Crystal Renaud recently posted...A Safe Place For Our ChildrenMy Profile

Sam @ PancakeWarriors
Reply December 21, 2015

Annmarie, this combo - I'm seriously drooling. The best part is that it's simple to make and you can clearly change the ingredients to suit the guests! You can't go wrong with that :) Great pictures as well, you are killin it girl :)
Sam @ PancakeWarriors recently posted...Chocolate Pecan Coconut Cups (#SundaySupper)My Profile

Nicole @ Fitful Focus
Reply December 22, 2015

These looks so pretty! Catering material!
Nicole @ Fitful Focus recently posted...Welcome to the New Fitful Focus!My Profile

Ilka
Reply December 22, 2015

Wow Annmarie,you really outdid yourself with this one again. :)

Rachel
Reply December 22, 2015

Admittedly, I thought this was some sort of chocolatey goodness when I saw your pictures. But then I realized it was mushrooms! Win! But also polenta, lose... I try to love polenta but there's just something about it... I should give it another try. :)
Rachel recently posted...Meatless Monday: Replenishing Kiwi Strawberry SmoothieMy Profile

rachel
Reply December 22, 2015

Oh yum! This looks delicious, and I am not even a huge fan of mushrooms. :)
rachel recently posted...A Little #MotivateME MondayMy Profile

Janelle @ Run With No Regrets
Reply December 22, 2015

This looks amazing! I love polenta but only have it when I'm at a fancy restaurant. I wish I had my stuff together this year like you do - I have to do a bulk of my shopping tonight!
Janelle @ Run With No Regrets recently posted...My Year of Running – 2015My Profile

Sue @ This Mama Runs for Cupcakes
Reply December 22, 2015

Yum! I'm not a huge fan of mushrooms but I love polenta!

Jenn
Reply December 22, 2015

Yum yum yum and YUM! I love polenta and this sounds divine!
Jenn recently posted...race report: st. augustine 10K {11.05.2015}My Profile

Abby @ BackAtSquareZero
Reply December 22, 2015

I bet holiday food at your house is just to die for!
Abby @ BackAtSquareZero recently posted...My Journey to Becoming a Run Coach – Part 4My Profile

HollieMuscles&Munchkins
Reply December 23, 2015

I am always looking for a healthy appetizer and these look wonderful. I have never done polenta at home and this will give me a reason to try it. By the way, your foot photography is awesome!
HollieMuscles&Munchkins recently posted...Adding Another Munchkin {3 Months Pregnant}My Profile

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table
Reply December 23, 2015

This looks incredible! I love polenta and you can't go wrong topping anything with caramelized onions.
Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table recently posted...How To Make a Wine Cork WreathMy Profile

Sandra Laflamme
Reply December 24, 2015

I haven't ever made polenta so that would be a first for me. I love mushrooms and would definitely give this a try!
Sandra Laflamme recently posted...Team Stonyfield and the Boston Marathon 2016!My Profile

Jess @hellotofit
Reply December 24, 2015

Cab Sauv is my favorite red, so count me in!

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