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This polenta was fabulous!! I made it as a side dish one night and enjoyed the leftovers as dinner the next. I am actually looking at this picture right now and thinking "...hmmm I need to make this again real soon" (true story.) Anyway, this dish started when I found some mozzerella tucked in the back of the fridge (it must have fallen in with some other ingredients and I didn't know it was there.) I looked at it and knew I had to use it soon. I made the polenta stovetop first and then poured into the dish to finish in the oven with the tomato sauce and cheese. Oh and of course some basil from the backyard - my kids love going outside and grabbing fresh ingredients for our meal. I ended up puttting mozzerella on everythng we ate that night but this polenta definitely stood out as the real star of that meal. Enjoy!!
What you need:
2 1/4 cups water
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup quick-cooking polenta
1 cup parmesan cheese
Mozzerella cheese, sliced (I'm not sure how much I used but you wan ttocover the top of the polenta)
fresh basil, chopped and more for garnish
salt and ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1 can tomato sauce
What you do:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray an 8x8 inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
Combine water, milk, and butter in a saucepan and heat to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the polenta and stir until thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove the polenta from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese and 2 chopped basil leaves. Season the polenta with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the polenta into your baking dish and arrange the remaining chilled pieces of butter over the top. Bake the polenta until it gets bubbly and it starts to brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven.
Pour sauce over the polenta and top with the mozzerella slices and some basil leaves (I also drizzled a bit of olive oil over the top.)
Return to the oven and bake until the sauce is warm and the cheese is melted, 5 to 10 minutes.