Parent’s Dinner Party – Vegan Seitan Piccata, Creamed Spinach & Creamy Polenta

YUM YUM YUM!!! If you want a meal to impress here you go 🙂

Candle 79 is one of my favorite vegan restaurants! And one of my fave dishes there is the Seitan Piccata.  I adapted this dish from their recipe and it was super deeeeelish! I am sure this sauce would work on tofu, tempeh, etc…  soooo yummy!!

I knew both our dads love Creamed Spinach and Polenta so I wanted to make it for them vegan style 🙂 It was super creamy and super amazing!! I doubled the recipes below to make sure we had enough and we were happy to have some left over! They were sooo good!

I love meals where people are like…”How is this vegan?!” This wasn’t the most low-fat of meals but it sure was amazing!! Creamed spinach and creamy polenta is not everyday food for us, but it was perfect for a special occasion.

I LOVE my warming drawer! Everything was ready to go for dinner, yet I had a clean kitchen perfect for the party!

This made a lot of sauce! Was great for meals that week as well 🙂

I cooked this down a little further, but it was still so rich and creamy! YUM!

YUM! Polenta Goodness!

Vegan Seitan Piccata
adapted from Candle 79 in NYC
Serves 6
1. Dredge seitan cutlets in flour, shaking off excess.
2. Heat 2 Tbs. olive oil in skillet over high heat. Sauté cutlets in oil 30 seconds per side, or until crisp and golden brown. Remove seitan from skillet, and drain on paper-towel-lined plate.
3. Add remaining 2 Tbs. olive oil to skillet, and return to high heat. Add shallots, onion, capers, and garlic, and sauté 1 to 2 minutes, or until softened, stirring frequently. Whisk in wine and lemon juice, and cook 3 to 5 minutes more.
4. Add broth, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer 1 minute to combine flavors. Whisk in parsley, margarine, salt, and pepper. Pour over seitan cutlets, garnish with large caper berries or lemon slices, and serve.

  • 6 seitan cutlets, rinsed and drained (I used 12 cutlets – Gardein Lightly Seasoned Chick’n Scallopini)
  • Whole-wheat flour for dredging
  • 4 Tbs. olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 2 Tbs. drained capers
  • 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine  (I used red instead)
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 Tbs. nonhydrogenated vegan margarine
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • Large caper berries or lemon slices, for garnish, optional

Vegan Creamed Spinach

  • salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh spinach
  • 3/4 cup soy creamer
  • 3/4 cup plain soy milk
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • grated nutmeg
  • fresh pepper

1. Large pot of water with salt – boil
2. Put spinach  for about a minute then drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process, then chop spinach
3. Place oil in broad saucepan on medium-low, add flour and cook stirring consistently till golden, then stir in creamer/milk
4. Add spinach and bring to a boil until spinach has absorbed most of liquid and sauce is thick, about 15-25 minutes
5. Add nutmeg, salt and pepper and season to taste

Vegan Creamy Polenta

  • 1 cup vegan creamer
  • 1 cup plain soy milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse cornmeal
  • 4 tablespoons Earth Balance
  • fresh ground black pepper

1. In a medium saucepan bring the creamer, soy milk and the water to a boil.
2. Add the salt and then gradually add the polenta while stirring.
3. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, stirring constantly.
4. The polenta should be smooth and large bubbles will pop on the surface.
5. Cook until very thick but not stiff, about 5 to 7 minutes.
6. Remove from heat and add earth balance and pepper.
7. Enjoy!!

Polenta with Black Beans, Pan-Fried Tofu & Roasted Coconut Tomato Sauce

This was surprisingly easy to make and deelish! Michael and I both loved it so much!! I would say double this recipe as it will go FAST 🙂 This dish is hearty with great flavor. This is definitely a great dish for people transitioning to a vegan diet, meat-eaters you want to impress with how deelish vegan food can be, and of course Vegans will love this too!! So yum!!!

I added my go-to pan-fried tofu to this dish. As far as I know, it is the best way to make tofu that is super tasty! The crust is perfect!! You can always change up the spices to suit any meal 🙂

Before the Sauce

Polenta with Black Beans, Pan-Fried Tofu & Roasted Coconut Tomato Sauce
Adapted from a recipe on http://www.thekitchn.com/

Polenta with Black Beans and Roasted Coconut Tomato Sauce
1 can black beans (15 ounces)
1 can diced tomatoes in juice (28 ounces)
6 large stalks swiss chard or kale
3 large or 6 small garlic cloves, diced
1 package pre-cooked polenta (18 ounces)
1/2 cup light coconut milk
2 tbs. jamaican jerk seasoning
3 tbs. olive oil
1 tbs. apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup water
1 tbs. chopped fresh thyme
1 lb extra firm tofu
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
dash of salt
dash of cayenne
sprinkling of Daiya/Italian – Mozzarella Blend

  1. Preheat oven to 500F. Empty entire can of tomatoes in a ceramic or glass baking dish, add coconut milk, and place in the oven. Bake 35 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbs. olive oil in a saucepan. Add 1-2 cloves diced garlic, 1 tbs. jerk seasoning and cook 2 minutes. Add entire can of black beans and set heat to low, stirring occasionally.
  3. Separate swiss chard stems from leaves. Dice stems very fine and add to a saute pan with 1 tbs. of oil and 2-3 cloves diced garlic. Heat through on medium 2-3 minutes, then add chopped leaves, apple cider vinegar, and 1/3 cup water. Cover with a lid and set heat to low.
  4. Check on the tomato sauce. Stir in fresh thyme and continue to roast.
  5. Drain, blot and press Tofu to release liquid. Slice into 1/2″ cubes.
  6. Heat vegetable oil on medium-high heat in a non-stick pan and add tofu, sprinkling with salt and cayenne. Let tofu sizzle for 6 minutes without stirring until a crust forms. Turn tofu over and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Remove from pan and train.
  7. In the same pan heat 1 tbs. olive oil on medium heat. Slice polenta in 1/2″ thick slices. Sprinkle one side with remaining 1 tbs. jerk seasoning. Fry polenta, about 3 minutes per side until light brown and crispy.
  8. To serve: spoon about 1/3 cup of beans on a place, 1/3 cup of tofu. Top with a heaping spoonful of greens and a slice of polenta. Top with about 1/4 cup tomato-coconut sauce and a sprinkling of daiya cheese and enjoy!

Slow Cooked Corn Polenta and Chiles

WE LOVE POLENTA! We love grits! Whatever you want to call it, it is deelish and one of my fave comfort foods ever! It is so simple to prepare but even simpler to eat 🙂

Sometimes when I know I have a lot of cooking to do, I love to use the slow cooker so that I can prepare one part of the meal beforehand and it is ready when I am done cooking the rest. Ahh so simple!

Pre-cooked Polenta

Soft Polenta Yummyness

Set Polenta

Polenta Square

Slow cooked Corn Polenta and Chiles

3 cups water (or milk/ or non-dairy milk)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup corn kernels
1 cup shredded montery jack cheese (or non-dairy cheese)
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (or non-dairy cheese)
1 can diced mild green chiles

  1. In a large saucepan or flame-proof slow cooker liner over medium heat bring water, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper to a boil.  Add polenta, whisking to prevent lumps. Continue whisking until mixture begins to thicken and bubbles, about 5 minutes. Add corn, Jack and Parmesan cheeses and chiles and mix well. Transfer to slow cooker stoneware if you are using a saucepan.
  2. Cover and cook on Low for 2-3 hours. It will then be a soft (deelish) polenta. If you want it to set transfer to a 8×8 glass pan and place in the fridge for a half hour or so.
  3. Serve and enjoy either way!
LOVE POLENTA!3 cups skim milk (water or soy milk)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup coarsley yellow cornmeal, preferably stone-ground
1 cup corn kernals
1 cup shredded montery jack cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 can diced mild green chiles

1. in a large saucepa over medium heat, bring milk, garli, rosemary, salt and pepper to taste to a boil. Gradually add polenta, in a steady stream, whisking to remove all lumps. Continue whisking until mixture begins to thicken and bubbles like lava, about 5 minutes. Add corn, Jack and Parmesan cheeses and chiles and mix well. Transfer to slow cooker stoneware.
2. Cover and cook on Low for 2 hours, until mixture is firm and just beginning to brown around the edges.

Polenta Vegetable Casserole

I love Polenta! (of course I do, it is made from corn and I love corn!!) It is such a comfort food for me. Adding veggies and cheese made this such a comforting and complete meal that we both really enjoyed! This is also super fast and something everyone will love. Plus there might even be leftovers to enjoy 🙂

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Polenta Vegetable Casserole
Makes 6-8 servings

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium eggplant, chopped into small cubes
1 small zucchini, diced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 cup water
10 ounces baby spinach
1 1/2 cups marinara sauce
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
14 ounces prepared polenta, sliced
1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella (I would use Vegan Mozz Daiya now 🙂)

1.Preheat oven to 450F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Heat oil in a large 12″ + nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplant, zucchini, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes. Add water and spinach; cover and cook until wilted, about 3 minutes. Stir marinara sauce into the vegetables and heat through, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and add in basil.
3. Place polenta slices in a single layer in the prepared baking dish, trimming to fit if necessary. Sprinkle with half the cheese and top with the vegetable mixture and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake until bubbling and the cheese has just melted, 12 to 15 minutes. Let stand for about 5 minutes before serving. ENJOY 🙂

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