Herb and garlic polenta with roasted vegetables, spinach and French lentils

Garnished with kalamata olives, sliced heirloom grape tomatoes and a dollop of lemon, miso cashew cream.


For the polenta
2 cups of boiling water
1/2t of coarse sea salt
1/2 cup of yellow cornmeal
2T unsweetened soy milk
2T olive oil (or coconut oil, if you prefer)
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T dried Italian herbs, rubbed
1/4t dried ground turmeric
2T nutritional yeast
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

For the lentils and vegetables
1/2 cup French lentils
1.5 cups water
1 sprig kombu (about 2″)
2T olive oil, divided
1/2t coarse sea salt
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T tarmari
1T balsamic vinegar
1 medium zucchini, trimmed, sliced in half length-wise, and then in 1/4″ slices
1 small eggplant, trimmed, sliced in half length-wise, and cut in 1/4″ slices
1 red pepper, cored and cut in 1/4″ strips
200g cremini mushrooms, quartered
1 cup packed baby spinach
1/2T lemon juice
2T kalamata olives, finely chopped
3-4 heirloom grape tomatoes, thinly sliced, 1/8″
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

For the lemon, miso cashew sauce
1/4t coarse sea salt
2t lemon juice
1T cashew butter
2T cold water
1t white miso
Sea salt and black pepper to taste


Make the polenta first, then the lentils and the roasted vegetables.
Bring the water and sea salt to a soft boil in a pan with a lid.
Add the corn meal slowly, stirring as you go.
Reduce heat to low and cook for roughly 30-40 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid sticking.
The polenta will be done when it’s quite thick and pulling away from the sides of the pan.
Add the nutritional yeast, garlic, turmeric, soy milk and any additional seasonings.
Stir thoroughly to combine.
Let stand five minutes to cool.
Spoon the polenta into two, 5″ round tart pans (or similar) and smooth the top with a spoon.
Let cool for about 20 minutes uncovered in the refrigerator to setup.
Cover with plastic wrap until you’re ready to put it into the oven (as below).
In a small sauce pan with a lid, bring the water to a simmer.
Add the kombu and lentils.
Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer 40 minutes or until the water is absorbed.
While the lentils cook, make the vegetables.
Preheat the oven to 450F.
Whisk 1T olive oil, 1/4t coarse sea salt, tamari, vinegar and garlic.
Toss the eggplant, zucchini, red pepper, mushrooms in the mixture.
Add the vegetables to a lightly oiled roasting pan and roast until the mix is lightly browned and softened, stirring here and there — expect 30 – 40 minutes. Ovens vary; use the colour and texture as guidance.
When the lentils are done, remove the kombu, rinse the lentils and set aside until the vegetables are done.
When they are, toss the lentils and the vegetables, and let cool 15 minutes.
Add the spinach, olives, 1T olive oil, nutritional yeast and 1/2T lemon juice.
Toss to combine, and let stand 10 minutes.
While the lentils and vegetables cool, add the polenta to a well-oiled baking sheet.
Bake for 20 – 30 minutes until lightly crisping.
While the polenta bakes, make the cashew sauce.
Whisk the cashew butter, lemon juice and water until smooth.
Add the miso and combine; the sauce should be thick but creamy. Add extra water, 1t at a time if it’s too thick.
Remove the polenta from the oven (carefully — it will be fragile) and plate.
Add half of the lentils and vegetables over the top.
Garnish with sliced tomatoes and a dollop of cashew sauce.

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