Polenta–Black Bean Medallions with Spicy Salsa

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| | Makes 10 medallions

INGREDIENTS

  • 4½ cups low-sodium vegetable broth or water
  • ½ cup chopped leek, white part only
  • 1½ teaspoon ground oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup quick-cooking polenta
  • 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • 1 cup tomato salsa
  • 1 cup guacamole

This polenta and black beans recipe is a fun dish that can be made into an appetizer when cut into medallions or a main dish if you prepare it as a casserole topped with assorted steamed vegetables. Either way, it’s great served with a spicy salsa and guacamole. This recipe freezes well for weeks, so make a double batch for a ready meal whenever needed.

Photo by Chris Miller and Kristy Turner.

Instructions:

1. In a large saucepan combine ½ cup of the broth and the leek, oregano, garlic, cumin, turmeric, and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 2 to 3 minutes or until leek is tender. Add the remaining 4 cups broth. Return to boiling.

2. Slowly add the polenta to the boiling broth mixture, stirring constantly. Cook and stir until mixture returns to boiling. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, covered, 30 minutes or until all of the broth is absorbed, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Gently stir in beans and lemon juice; season with salt. Cook 5 minutes more.

3. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Spread polenta on one of the prepared baking sheets until ½ inch thick; cool. Cover and chill at least 1 hour.

4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Using a 1½-inch cookie cutter, cut chilled polenta into 9 or 10 rounds, and place on the remaining prepared baking sheet. Bake 20 to 30 minutes or until heated through and golden, turning once. Serve with salsa and guacamole.