Creamy Polenta with Awesome Bolognese

Creamy Polenta

with Awesome Bolognese


Summer Recipes Comfort Foods Winter Recipes High-Protein Soy-Free Root Vegetables Nuts Seitan Dinner Italian
45 min


  1. 2 tablespoons roasted cashews
  2. 8 ounces seitan
  3. 4 ounces carrots
  4. 1 ounce celery
  5. Fresh oregano
  6. 1 onion
  7. Garlic
  8. 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil*
  9. Salt*
  10. 1/4 cup red wine or water*
  11. 1 can diced tomatoes
  12. 1/2 cup cornmeal
  13. Pepper*
  14. Fresh basil
  15. *not included
  16. **one head of garlic included in one of the meal bags



Pulse the cashews in a food processor until they’re finely chopped; transfer to a small bowl and reserve. Pulse the seitan in the food processor until it’s crumbled, scraping down the sides as needed (there’s no need to wash the bowl of the food processor between uses). If you don’t have a food processor, you can chop each as finely as you’re able. Rinse the carrot, celery, and oregano. Trim and peel the carrot and onion; trim the celery. Chop the carrot, celery, and onion. Strip the oregano leaves from the stems and chop them. Chop enough garlic to measure 1 1/2 teaspoons.


Put 1 tablespoon oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. When it’s hot, add the seitan and cook, stirring occasionally until it browns a little, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, onion, and garlic, sprinkle with salt, and continue cooking until the onions soften, 5 to 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup wine or water and cook, stirring and scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan, until the pan is dry, 1 or 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, 1/2 cup water, and the oregano and bring to a boil. Lower the heat so the sauce bubbles steadily and cook, stirring once in a while until it has thickened, 20 to 25 minutes.


Put the cornmeal in a small saucepan off the heat along with 1/4 cup water and a pinch of salt and whisk to make a smooth slurry.


Put the pan over medium-high heat and bring the polenta to a boil. Lower the heat so it bubbles gently and cook, whisking frequently and adding water as needed to keep the mixture loose and free of lumps (figure about 1 more cup), until the polenta looks creamy and the cornmeal is tender, 15 to 25 minutes. Stir in the remaining tablespoon oil and some pepper and taste and adjust the seasoning.


Rinse and dry about the half of the basil (save rest for another use); strip the leaves from the stems and chop them. Taste and adjust the seasoning of the sauce. To serve, put the polenta into bowls, top with the sauce, and sprinkle with the cashews and basil.