It was not until the past couple years that I even knew what polenta was or looked like for that matter. For whatever reason, I never grew up eating it, and it was never a dish that my parents made. After figuring out what it was and trying it I have realized that it is one of those types of food that either people love or hate. I happen to really enjoy it and find it a really nice substitute for pasta. However I have understand why people would shy away from it, if not cooked correctly it’s just a little slimy. But DON’T let that deter you! haha, I personally love the polenta log from Trader Joes that is already made and just requires slicing. I then bake it so that it is slightly crispy on the outside but warm and smooth on the inside. I’ve also heard of people grilling polenta, however I do not have the pleasure of owning a grill at my apartment so the oven has certainly become my best friend.
Bolognese sauce, as you will probably find it called in Italian restaurants, is simply a meat sauce that is heavier on the meat than the tomatoes or marinara but that is also subject to personal taste if you are making it yourself. This meal is so simple to make with the premade polenta, har of marinara, and thawed ground beef that I am always shocked how beautiful and filling it tastes.
Sliced Polenta with Bolognese Sauce
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 1 log premade polenta
- 1 lb ground beef thawed
- 1/4 chopped white or yellow onion
- 1 jar marinara sauce
- 3 tbl olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- preheat oven to 350 degrees
- slice polenta according to desired thickness but keep in mind that the thicker, the longer they will take to cook and also be sure to keep the slices evenly thick
- lay the slices out on baking dish and brush each side with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper
- bake the polenta for about 20 minutes or until they get crispy (they won’t turn brown but keep checking out firm they have gotten)
- While the polenta is baking, add the onions to a nonstick pan and cook over medium heat until they start to turn opaque.
- Add ground beef and cook until the meet is crumbled and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
- add the jar of marinara sauce to the ground beef, lower heat to low and simmer until heated through. Taste the sauce to make sure it is seasoned well (adjust any salt, pepper, or italian seasoning you wish to add)
- Place 3-4 slices of polenta on a plate and top with bolognese sauce and parmesan cheese (if desired) ENJOY!