Have a go – it never fails to delight! And if you are into that sort of thing, take a pic and tag us on social media #sustainableequitation.
The polenta component of the meal couldn’t be easier. Simply buy a pack of quick cook polenta and follow the directions on the packet. Take it from someone who has made every single mistake in the book… you can’t use the same cooking methods for regular and quick cook polenta! Make sure you’ve got quick cook (which is sometimes called instant) polenta or you’ll end up with a chalky clump of yellow clay.
We usually serve the polenta as a mash with the veggie stew, and spread the leftover polenta in a pyrex or similar dish so it sets firm, you can then use it for polenta chips or Pizza (more about that below).
Versatile Veggie Stew
1 can each of kidney and black beans
1 can of chickpeas
1 can of tomatoes
1 can corn
1 sachet (or 2 tablespoons) tomato paste
1 onion, diced
3 carrots, diced
4 stalks of celery, chopped fine
1 red capsicum, diced
1 thumb sized chunk of ginger, minced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons each of paprika, cumin and coriander
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs (oregano, thyme, basil or whatever mix your supermarket sells)
1 – 3 long red chillies, minced depending on your taste
Salt, pepper and GF soy sauce to taste
In a couple of tablespoons of oil sauté the onion, carrots and celery until soft with the bay leaves and the cinnamon stick. Add the garlic, ginger, capsicum, herbs and spices and stir until spices are fragrant. Add the chilli.
Add the beans, chickpeas, both lots of tomatoes and, if necessary, enough water to hold a simmer without burning. Simmer over a low heat for 25 minutes. Add the corn then taste and add salt, pepper and soy sauce to taste.
If you serve the veggies over polenta and you have kids and knives and forks are your usual dinner aesthetic, consider letting them eat it with their fingers. It’s actually a lot of fun and only a little bit messy.
Polenta pizza or polenta chips
Now that you've scoffed your veggie stew and polenta, the remaining polenta (if there is any!) can be cut up into chips and baked in the oven with a dash of oil on them or even better - cut them into small squares, spread a little tomato paste on them and some thinly sliced onion, capsicum, mushroom and whatever other pizza toppings you love and serve with a quick salad. Such an easy way to use these leftovers and win the hearts of the family!