This week's installment of Family Dinner is Garlic Herb Polenta w/ braised kale and red bell pepper. I made this tonight for the mini's and they. went. to. town. The boy had two servings and even asked me to save him some for breakfast! This recipe is hella easy to make and is high in protein, beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, and super rich in calcium.
Garlic Herb Polenta w/ Braised Kale & Red Bell Peppers
Garlic Herb Polenta:
- 2 C milk
- 1 3/4 C water
- 1/4 C butter
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/4 C freshly grated parmesan
- 1 C cornmeal(quick cooking variety)
- oil for baking
- 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 2 tbs. olive oil
- Kosher salt
- 1 bunch kale, stemmed and cut into pieces
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 2 tbs. vinegar
- s & p
- pasta sauce (to taste for finished dish)
Melt the butter in a large pot. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add all spices, milk, and water.
Bring to a boil.
Slowly add cornmeal all the while stirring polenta. Turn down heat. As polenta reaches the consistency of a soft cheese, add parmesan. Stir.
Remove from heat.
Pour into a 9x13 baking pan and let settle.
While polenta is settling heat oven 350°. Once heated, add polenta for 5-10 minutes. I like to leave mine in longer to get a crispier polenta.
As polenta bakes, warm a sauce pan on medium heat. Add 2 tbs. olive oil.
Add red bell pepper an onion. Sauté until onion is translucent.
Add kale. Cook over medium heat until kale wilts. At this time, you can add some water and vinegar if your kids like it. You can also add red pepper flakes to kick it up a notch. Add s&p to taste.
Cut polenta into squares. Add a tbs. of pasta sauce, then top with braised kale mixture. Grate Parmesan to finish. Enjoy!!
My kids freaking loved this dish. My son liked it better as a 'polenta' towered and my daughter liked it better deconstructed. When making this (and any other) recipe I believe you should always make it approachable for your kids. If they hate red peppers but love broccoli, switch 'em out and modify. If they don't like it all together, deconstruct it like I did for my girl. Make it approachable for them and I guarantee you'll have them eating all sorts of wonderful foods in no time.