chickpea and spinach stew with seared polenta

4 Jan

this is a really simple dinner, it’s very “pantry”-ish. i debated even posting it just because it’s not so glamorous  but i figured it would be  a nice way to show a good way to use left overs…and to enlighten you in the joys of seared polenta.

it’s kind of similar to my winter vegetable stew, but in flavor its very different.

this was 100% a pantry recipe for me so feel free to use any veggies you have on hand.

what you need for 2 servings of the stew:

1 cup of chickpeas

3 heaping cups of spinach

If you have onion, you should use it! I didn’t have any.

1.5 cups of canned or box diced tomatoes and their juices

1/3 cup of water

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 carrot, diced or sliced, whatever

crushed red pepper flakes

salt, black pepper

1 bay leaf

fresh basil (optional, but delicious)

parmesan cheese (optional)

what you need for 2 polenta rounds:

1 cup of water (i actually use 1/2 c of water and 1/2 c of half and half)

5 T of quick cooking polenta

a large pinch of salt and pepper

how to make:

make the polenta first, boil the water, add the salt and pepper, then whisk in the polenta ONE tablespoon at a time so that it doesn’t get clumpy!!!! Once its thick and creamy. Lay the polenta out in the corner of a parchment lined sheet pan so that you can get 2 round cookie cutter’s out of it. DON’T ACTUALLY CUT ANYTHING OUT YET, JUST EYEBALL IT TO MAKE SURE THAT 2 CIRCLES CAN BE CUT OUT OF IT. I actually use the rim of a glass because I don’t have cookie cutters so feel free to use that also. So lay some plastic wrap directly onto the polenta rectangle so that a skin doesn’t form and stick it in the freezer for 20 minutes or into the fridge for about 45. while the polenta sets, make the stew.

Spray a pan over medium heat with pam, or use some olive oil. Add in the(onion if you are using and cook for 5 minutes) then add in carrots and garlic, cook about five minutes.


Add in the chickpeas, crushed red pepper and cook another 5. pour in the tomato and liquid. Add in the bay leaf and turn the heat to low and let sit for about 20 minutes or until the chickpeas are soft.

add in the spinach, stir and cover until wilted. add salt, pepper and fresh basil.

Once the polenta is set, heat a sauté pan over medium high heat, spray with pan spray. Cut out 2 circles from the polenta and put in the hot pan, let cook for about 5 minutes on each side or until a golden brown crust forms.


spinach chickpea stew printable recipe



3 Responses to “chickpea and spinach stew with seared polenta”

  1. sandyabrams January 5, 2012 at 10:01 pm #

    loved it! made it over quinoa this time…was fine but not as good as polenta looked. but I went pantry like you said..Thnx!

  2. Laura January 18, 2012 at 12:14 pm #

    omg it looks like arepas so beautiful…

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