Recipe of the Week - Grilled Polenta with Grilled Two Tomato Onion Sauce|
by Wen Zientek-Sico
Had enough potato salad yet? If you are looking for an easy but really tasty side dish, this is the one for you. It won't even heat up your kitchen or take more than thirty minutes start to finish to get ready.
Grilled Polenta with Grilled Two Tomato Onion Sauce
Summer side dishes always tend to stray into the ordinary and the familiar. There are times though when you have just had more than enough pasta and potato salad and it is time for something a bit different. This side dish is definitely different than a salad, and takes about the same time to prepare. The sauce can be made up to 8 hours in advance and stored at room temperature, and the polenta grills in just minutes. Both the sauce and the polenta are excellent by themselves. The sauce is excellent over pasta, rice, seafood, or poultry and the polenta makes a great side dish with almost any entrée. It is especially good under other mixtures of grilled vegetables. Prepared polenta is available in most areas in the refrigerated section. Homemade polenta can be used, but should be formed into a roll and well chilled before slicing and grilling.
Grilled Two Tomato Onion Sauce
1 teaspoon crumbled dried Italian herbs
Freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves
1/4 cup olive oil
1 thickly sliced vidalia onion
3 thickly sliced ripe plum tomatoes
2 thickly sliced medium yellow tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons tarragon vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
In a medium bowl mix together the herbs, salt, and pepper. Add the garlic and crush to form a smooth paste. Add the olive oil. Brush the olive oil mixture over the onion slices. Place the onions on a hot grill and grill for 5-6 minutes on each side, or until browned and soft. While the onions are grilling, prepare the tomatoes by brushing them with the remaining olive oil mixture. Place the tomatoes on the grill and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until lightly charred, but not mushy. Remove the onions and tomatoes from the grill and place on a dish. Cool slightly, then coarsely chop the tomatoes and onions, making sure to reserve all the juices. Place the chopped onions and tomatoes along with their juices into a medium serving bowl. Add the fresh basil and vinegar and toss well. Taste, and then add additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve immediately, or store at room temperature for up to eight hours before serving.
1 pound tube prepared polenta
2 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
Slice the polenta into 1/4 inch thick slices. Brush each side with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until the polenta is lightly blackened and warmed through. Do not overcook or the polenta will become mushy. Serve hot topped with the Grilled Two Tomato Onion Sauce.
Makes 6 servings.
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes