Sometimes you just need a meal that sticks to your ribs, but not necessarily to your hips. Now I'm not going to say this recipe will help you loose weight but honestly if you keep your portion of polenta within reason it's really not too bad. There's no cream or butter, just a little goat cheese mixed into the grits with a side of protein and vitamin rich spinach along with oven roasted tomatoes.
Mike, my husband, says he 'doesn't like grits' (because I told him it was similar to polenta). Well, after eating his first portion he says 'this is grits? hum? Well this is really good, can I have some more?" Two huge servings later he chimes in with "I think you should make this again sometime." Winning!
Another good thing about this recipe is the entire thing only took 40 minutes and I only had to use 1 deep skillet and 1 lipped cookie sheet, making clean-up also super fast! Enjoy!
Stuff You'll Need: Serves 4
1 lb shrimp (I used medium, peeled and deveined, uncooked)
3 cups mini tricolor tomatoes
3 cloves garlic
3 cups (or 1 bag) spinach
3 cups water
1 cup polenta
2 tablespoons of thick balsamic vinegar
3 ounces goat cheese
sprinkle of garlic powder
sprinkle of paprika
sprinkle of seasoning salt
salt to taste
olive oil for sautéeing
*Visit my Favorites page for links to my balsamic vinegar, polenta and more.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Place tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet (aka jelly pan). Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil, toss to coat. Roast for 15 minutes, gently turn the tomatoes and repeat until the tomatoes are browned about 15 additional minutes. Remove from oven and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar, toss to combine. Let rest until time to plate.
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large deep rimmed skillet. Once hot, add the shrimp and cook 1-2 minutes per side or until pink. Don't overcook, no one likes chewy shrimp. Sprinkle on a pinch of the garlic powder, paprika, pepper and seasoning salt. Remove from the skillet and set aside.
In the same pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute gently 1-2 min. Add the spinach and turn down to a low simmer. Keep stirring and flipping over the spinach for a few minutes until it's all wilted. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. Using a paper towel, wipe out the pan, clean out any leftover bits.
In the same pan, now bring the water to a boil. Add the polenta and whisk until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, for extra creamy polenta add 2 to 3 pads of butter. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the polenta has thickened. If after 15 minutes the polenta is not cooked add a little water, stir well and cover with a lid. Once soft, add the goat cheese and maybe a pinch more salt (I recommend several taste tastings as you cook) stir until combined. Taste and adjust as needed. Plate the polenta with the shrimp, spinach and tomatoes on top, serve immediately. Feel free to sprinkle on a little extra goat cheese on top as you're serving.
Original Inspiration from PinchofYum.com - roasted tomatoes with goat cheese polenta