Layered Polenta Casserole

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean VeganThis is how tonight’s post-dinner conversation went between father and son:
        “This is going to be deee-vine for tomorrow’s lunch,” father said as he placed the leftovers in a container.
        “Wait, who said you get them all?” his son said, grabbing hold of the dish.
        “You will lose an arm, son,” father said firmly. 
A wresting match in the kitchen ensued. I don’t know who the victor was; I walked away, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be eating the leftovers for breakfast. Yes, it was that good.

INGREDIENTS:
1 pre-made polenta log (I used the sun-dried tomato & garlic variety), cut into 18 slices
2 C spinach, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
2 C mushrooms, sliced
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp rosemary
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 C bread crumbs or panko
1/2 C Parmezano Sprinkles (recipe below)
Parmezano Sprinkles: (from the Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook)
1/2 C blanched almonds
2 Tbs nutritional yeast flakes
1-2 tsp light miso
Heaping 1/4 tsp salt
Sauce:
4 Tbs Earth Balance margarine
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
6 Tbs flour
1 C vegetable broth
1/4 C almond milk
Salt and pepper, to taste

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean Vegan

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 375. To make the Parmezano Sprinkles (which I recommend making ahead of time) combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and process until you have little crumbles . . . then refrigerate.

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean Vegan Combine the chopped spinach, tomatoes and sliced mushrooms in a bowl along with the basil, rosemary, salt, and pepper.

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean VeganTo prepare the sauce, melt the Earth Balance and add the garlic. Saute about 2 minutes. Add the flour and whisk until smooth. Next, add vegetable broth a little at time, whisking constantly until everything is incorporated over medium heat. The sauce should begin to thicken. Slowly add in the almond milk, an 1/8 C at a time and whisk thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper. Add a ladle of sauce to the bottom of an 8″ baking dish—just enough to coat the bottom. Place 9 slices of the polenta on the bottom and sprinkle with about 1/4 C of the Parmezano Sprinkles.

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean VeganNext, layer on the spinach mixture—pack it down if you have to, but get it all on there. Top with the remaining 9 slices of polenta . . .

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean Vegan. . . then remaining sauce, the bread crumbs, and another 1/4 C of the Parmezano Sprinkles.

Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean VeganBake for 20-25 minutes. Let it sit for  about 5-6 minutes before digging in. Enjoy!
Layered Polenta Casserole -- Epicurean Vegan

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