Ingredients (use vegan versions):

1 cup coarse corn meal
3 cups water
1/2 tablespoon salt
saucy leftovers* (about 1 cup - to taste)
soy cheese (a handful)

Directions:

Polenta is a very versatile dish -- it has an unassuming flavor, and goes well with a lot of different things. This is a tip for using leftovers.

Make up the polenta by bringing the 3 cups of water and the salt to a good boil, then adding the cornmeal in a thin, steady stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Lower the heat and simmer the mixture for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the polenta becomes very thick. When the polenta is done, pour it into an oiled glass pie pan. Take what ever leftovers you have (anything saucy is best -- *curries, or anything with eggplant, tomatoes, or mushrooms in it) and spread it in a 1/4 to 1/2 inch layer over the polenta. Sprinkle some soy cheese over the top if it seems to go with your leftovers. Put the finishe'd product under the broiler for just a few minutes, until bubbly and hot. (Be careful! Things burn fast under the broiler. After the first minute, I look at it every 20 seconds, or so.)

This recipe makes a hearty, grain based meal that looks kind of fancy while being fast and easy, and can easily be doubled for company or taken to work the next day and nuked for lunch. It also makes a nice change from serving everything over rice. Ellen

Serves: 4

Preparation time: 30 minutes