Minestrone Ragout over Polenta

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup diced peeled eggplant
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/3 cup chopped carrot
1 teaspoon dried italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 garlic clove minced
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can italian-style stewed tomatoes undrained and chopped
1 cup hot cooked orzo (about 1/2 cup rice-shaped
pasta)
1 cup chopped spinach
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (16-ounce) tube polenta cut into 12 slices
cooking spray
basil sprigs (optional)

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the eggplant and next 8 ingredients (eggplant through garlic), and sauté for 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in orzo, spinach, basil, and salt; cook for 1 minute.

Preheat broiler. Place polenta on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; broil for 3 minutes on each side. Serve ragout over polenta; garnish with basil, if desired.

Serving Size: 1 cup ragout and 3 polenta slices



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