Friday, July 22, 2011

Summer Squash, Sweet Pepper, and Polenta Casserole

Yummy! My friend Alondra first made this for us, but we have the same edition of Joy, so I have the recipe, too. She didn't have potatoes, so she added an extra zucchini and a banana pepper or two (way to use the ol' garden!). We ate it room temperature (which I liked and the recipe says is an option), but she thought it would be better warm. You decide which you prefer! Long ingredient list, but most of it is veggies that are easy to come by.

~from Joy of Cooking, 1997 edition

  • 1/2 T. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 T. olive oil
  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch thick pieces
  • 2 small red-skinned new potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium yellow squash, cut into 3/4-inch cubes*
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into 3/4-inch cubes*
  • 1/2 c. cornmeal
  • 1/4 c. grated Parmesan
  • 1 T. fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. pepper
  • 1 c. milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 T. grated Gruyere (or Parmesan), about 2 ounces
*remember that "medium" is probably a 6-7 inch squash; garden grown zukes can be enormous :-)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter a 9-inch round baking dish (can use a cast iron skillet or similar for this as well).
  2. Heat butter and oil in large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, bell pepper, and potatoes. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes.
  3. Stir in garlic and cook until veggies are partially softened, but not browned, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add yellow squash and zucchini; cook, stirring, until almost tender, 4 to 5 minutes.
  5. Toss cornmeal, flour, first amount Parmesan, thyme, salt, and pepper together in large bowl. Combine milk and eggs and whisk into cornmeal mixture until combined. Stir in veggies (batter is loose), and spread in prepared baking dish.
  6. Bake until firm, 25-30 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake until golden around the edges, about 7 minutes.
  8. Serve hot or at room temperature.
Serves 4

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