Polenta Rounds with Marinara and Pesto, Navy Beans with Spinach (No Added Fat)
I was thinking of making a pesto pizza today and started making a bean side dish, but then saw a tube of polenta in my cabinets, and decided to try cooking a polenta main dish instead of the pizza. I thought I'd start with a simple experiment of cooking polenta rounds with marinara and onion; surely a minute of high pressure cooking would be enough but I thought I'd try 2 minutes to really embed the tomato flavor into the polenta. Here is what I did:
- 1 cup navy beans, rinsed
- 1 cup Yukon Gold potato, cut into 1/2" cubes (one medium potato)
- Vegan bouillon cube
- Enough water to just cover the potato and beans (maybe 3/4 cup?)
- 1/2 cup chopped spinach (frozen or fresh; I used frozen)
- 3T nutritional yeast
- 1/2 t salt
- 2t lime (or lemon) juice
- 500g (just over a pound) of prepared polenta cut into 3/4" discs (the polenta I used came as an elliptical cylinder maybe 2" on the longer side and maybe 1 3/4" on the shorter side, but any roughly similar dimensions should be fine)
- 1 cup 3/8" onion cubes (about 1/2 of a medium Vidalia onion that I used)
- 1 cup marinara sauce
- 1 cob of corn
- 1/8 t salt
- 1/2 cup pesto sauce (as I described last week)
- (Optional) 1/8 t garlic powder
- I put the beans, potato, bouillon cube, and water in my Instant Pot pressure cooker, and cooked on high pressure for 35m. I should have soaked the beans but came up with this idea as I was formulating dinner.
- I needed the pressure cooker for the polenta (I soon hope to have two pressure cookers), so didn't wait long before I gently let out the pressure and opened the pot.
- I mixed in the spinach, nutritional yeast, salt, and lime juice, and set aside, covered, so that the spinach would defrost and heat up by the time I served (5m was really all that was needed for the spinach to heat).
- Into the empty Instant Pot, I put the onion, and then the polenta slices and, finally, the marinara sauce.
- I cooked for 2 minutes under high pressure.
- While the polenta was cooking, I roasted the corn by removing the leaves and silk and flame roasting over my gas range, then using a knife to strip the kernels; I ended up with about a cup.
- When the pressure cooker was done, I let it sit for a few minutes, slowly let out the remaining pressure, and carefully opened the pot.
- I mixed in the corn kernels, salt, pesto sauce, and garlic powder, and served.