I love quick and easy dinners that combine several food groups on one plate, or in this case, in one bowl. Frozen shrimp are great to have on hand for quick seafood dinners on busy weeknights, but you can also use the fresh variety. If you don’t have any whole grain cornmeal in the house, it’s OK to substitute pasta, but try to make it whole wheat so you include whole grains and fiber. No spinach? Kale works well, too.
Easy Creamy Polenta, Shrimp, and Vegetable Bowls
Makes 4 servings.
2 cups water
1 cup whole grain cornmeal
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and diced
8 cups raw baby spinach, washed and drained
40 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, if desired
1 pound large raw shrimp, peeled and cleaned, defrosted if using frozen
Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for about 3 minutes or until just tender. Add the spinach, tomatoes, and garlic to the pan and sauté, stirring until the spinach wilts and the tomatoes become tender, about 5 minutes. Add the crushed red pepper and stir. Remove from heat. Cover and set aside.
When the water has boiled, add the cornmeal, using a whisk to prevent clumping. Turn heat to low, cover, and simmer the cornmeal for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the butter and cheese and continue to whisk for another 2 minutes until the cornmeal achieves a creamy consistency. Remove from heat. Cover and set aside.
Add the shrimp to the spinach mixture and cook for about 3 minutes or until the shrimp is pink.
Divide the polenta between four bowls and top each bowl with equal amounts of the shrimp-vegetable mixture. Season with fresh ground black pepper, if desired.
416 calories; 17 grams fat (6 grams saturated fat); 190 milligrams cholesterol; 340 milligrams sodium; 36 grams carbohydrate; 9 grams fiber; 30 grams protein