As much as I love cooking, my kitchen is not cut out for complicated recipes. There is very little counter space, no room to store fancy equipment, and the apartment-size oven only has one small rack. Not that I haven’t made complex dishes; it just gets a little crazy in there. Picture pots and pans on every square inch of free space!
So for the most part, I am all about quick and easy recipes, like my Baked Polenta with Chunky Roasted Red Pepper Sauce. This dish uses healthy convenience foods to create a meal that is ready in minutes. And it’s so delicious, too!
Give this recipe a try the next time you are looking for a tasty, yet effortless dish.
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
- 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes, optional
- 1 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes
- 1 12-oz. jar roasted red peppers, chopped
- 5 large leaves fresh basil, roughly chopped (plus additional for serving)
- 1 18-oz. tube prepared polenta
- 1 cup shredded Italian blend cheese (I like Trader Joe’s Quattro Formaggio)
- salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Add olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt to a large skillet. Turn burner on to medium heat and, when hot, saute 1 – 2 minutes or until fragrant.
Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray. Thinly slice polenta into 12 thin rounds. Place polenta slices in baking dish, overlapping to fit. Cover polenta with tomato-pepper sauce, then sprinkle with cheese. Bake polenta for 10 – 15 minutes, or until cheese is lightly browned.
Divide baked polenta among 4 plates and garnish with extra basil, if desired. Enjoy!
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