In a moment of creativity and inspired by a recipe given to me by Jennifer of Veg*n Cooking, I made polenta lasagna. Now, I know it looks kinda weird there in the photo, but hear me out. I have a good excuse. The truth is that well, first, I only had a little bit of polenta left in the freezer and didn't feel up to making another batch so I just used what I had; and second, when I originally put the lasagna together (since I only had a little bit of polenta - 8 slices, I believe), I put the lasagna together in a bread pan. Well, as you know if you read Wednesday's post, I made 2 loaves of Chocolate Nut Bread this week so the lasagna (which had been sitting in the fridge until I was ready to bake it) had to come out of one of the bread pans and onto a small cookie sheet, as displayed here, so that I could use my bread pans. Considering I did very little cooking this week it's amazing how I get myself into these situations, right?
Anyway, so what's in this cheesy beauty? As I do with most of the things I make, I used the recipe as more of a suggestion than a rule, so be sure to check out the link above to find the REAL recipe if you'd like to make your own. Here's how mine went together from the bottom layer up...
Layer 1 - Thinly sliced polenta made from local cornmeal and water (since I didn't have much polenta left and didn't feel like making more, I just sliced the squares I had in half. This meant they ended up being roughly the thickness of a lasagna noodle)Layer 2 - Fresh local spinach, sauteed in olive oil with just a touch of saltLayer 3 - Tomato sauce/paste (chopped tomatoes, oregano, basil, and rosemary (all local), sauteed in olive oil with just a touch of local shredded gouda; then I whisked up flour and whole milk (local) and added it to the sauteed tomato sauce to form a thick paste)Layer 4 - More thinly sliced polentaLayer 5 - More tomato sauce/pasteLayer 6 - Sprinkled shredded gouda cheese on topI baked all this in my toaster oven for about 45 minutes at 350 degrees.
Voila! Polenta lasagna! And let's see... the only non-local ingredients were olive oil, salt, and that little bit of flour I used in the paste. Not bad! All the veggies and herbs came from our local farmers market, the milk and cheese came from our local dairy, and the cornmeal came from DiIorio Farm (about 40 miles south of town).
This concludes week seven of the One Local Summer Challenge with and 6 weeks to go. Hey! That's over half way! I'm the first to admit that I'm a pretty monotonous eater, so I hope I'm not boring anyone yet. Maybe a nice local rice dish next week...
For more recipes and ideas on local meals, check out the One Local Summer Challenge website (hosted by Farm to Philly) and see what others are eating (weekly OLS posts are made to theFarm to Philly website on Tuesdays of each week). If you're in the BCS area and are looking for local suppliers here in town, visit my post here, where I list sources for all kinds of goodies.
Happy (and mindful) eating!