Friday, February 26, 2016

Recipes My Daughter Likes: Polenta with Speckled Butter Beans

Anything I file under "Recipes my daughter likes" will by definition be vegetarian and vegan. This one is quick and easy and has a Southern flavor. It is a recipe that I threw together the other night with things that we had on hand. It turned out very well, being healthy, filling and it even had a gourmet flair.

Here is what I had on hand to prepare the dish:


  • Fresh frozen speckled butter beans, 10 oz.
  • Field Roast brand Vegan Italian sausage (1 link)
  • One roll of packaged polenta
  • Vegetable bouillon 

Here is what I did:

Using one cube of Knorr's Vegetable Bouillon, prepare 2 cups of broth in a medium sized boiler.

Add about 10 oz. of fresh frozen speckled butter beans (I used about 1/3 of my 32 oz. bag in the freezer). Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for about 45 minutes, until beans are tender. Add water as needed.

While the beans are cooking:
  • Unwrap the polenta and slice if into ½ inch rounds 
  • Unwrap one of the Field Roast Vegan Italian sausages and slice it into ½ inch rounds. 
Have these on a plate ready to cook when the beans are done.

Cooking the polenta and sausage:

In a large skillet, dissolve another cube of Knorr's Vegetable Bouillon in about an inch of water. Use this broth to cook the polenta slices as well as the sausage slices in. (I have cooked polenta in the oven and I have tried frying it in a skillet with some oil, but the best method I have found is to simmer the slices in a skillet with some broth instead of oil. This way, there is no sticking to the pan, and the polenta is nicely flavored by the broth)

Over medium heat, sauté the polenta in the skillet with the broth for about six minutes, turning each slice over halfway through (about 3 minutes per side). When the polenta is cooked, remove them to a serving plate and then do the same preparation with the sausage slices, sautéing them in the broth for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. 

By the time I put the sausages in, the broth had cooked down and I needed more liquid, so I added a little sherry to the skillet to finish cooking the sausages (of course, on should always have some sherry at the ready in the kitchen).

When serving, place three or four slices of polenta on a plate. With a slotted spoon, dish out some butter beans on top of the polenta. Scoop up some sausage rounds ad scatter then on top of the butter beans. Enjoy!

Yield: This recipe produced three good servings. Adding another sausage link would have stretched it to four good servings servings. You could increase the amount of speckled butter beans as well, depending upon how many people you are serving.


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