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Polenta casserole with colourful veggies and smoked tofu in creamy cashews sauce – vegan, gluten free, oil free

I know polenta since I am a child. In grew up in Hungary, where there is a famous dish with polenta. It is made with goat cheese and bacon in the oven. I never liked it, because it was really greasy and had a very dominant taste from the goat cheese. And with this my polenta journey ended for a while. A few years ago I became vegan and although I veganized a lot of Hungarian dishes (hier for example my favourite: Cauliflower casserole), I never even was thinking about cooking this one vegan. 

Until last week, when I brought polenta in a supermarket. I did not want to make a salty dish with it, but to spice up my most favourite breakfast, semolina pudding. I was thinking to switch the spelt to corn to make it gluten free. But it did not work our so good, I did not like the consistence and the taste was also far away from the spelt. 

But now I had half a package of polenta left. I do not like to waste food, I was part of Foodsharing for a long time, and saved hundreds of kilos of food that others would have been thrown away from supermarkets. So throwing the polenta away was not an option. 

I remembered this dish from Hungary and was thinking why not making a healthy, oil free alternative to it. 

It turned out so delicious, this soft spicy polenta puree, with yummy veggies and a creamy ceshews sauce was a big success in our family. 

So here is the recipe for you:

Ingredients:

250 g polenta

3 carrots 

1 brokkoli

1 onion

2 cloves of garlic

250 g mushrooms

250 g smoked tofu

100 g cashews 

300 ml soy milk

Soy sauce

2 spoons of beer yeast

Spices: salt, pepper, smoked paprika, sweet paprika, curry, garam masala

  1. I soak the cashews in warm water and heat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. I make a marinade for the smoked tofu. I mix 2 spoons of soy sauce, 2 spoons of mustard, 2 spoons of agave syrup and 1 tea spoon of smoked paprika. I cut the tofu in cubes and then they can jump to the marinade. 
  3. Then I cook the polenta. I boil water and make it very spicy with salt, pepper, curry, garam masala and sweet paprika. Then I pour the polenta to it and cook it by constant stirring. When it is ready, I cover it and put aside. 
  4. Now it is the veggies turn. I cut the onion and the garlic, the broccoli, carrots and mushrooms. 
  5. In a pot I heat two spoons of soy sause and add the onion and garlic. I spice it with salt, pepper and a bit of curry. When they fried a bit, I add the carrots, and mushrooms. After a few minutes the broccoli can jump in too. If needed I put constantly a bit of water or soy milk to it. 
  6. Then we prepare the tofu. In a pan I heat two spoons of soy sauce, add the tofu and let it fry until it gets brown.
  7. For the cashew cream, I rinse the cashews, and blend them together with the soy milk, 2 spoons of beer yeast, salt and pepper to a creamy consistence.
  8. Now it is time to assemble the casserole. I layer the polenta, the veggies and tofu in a baking pan and pour over the creamy cashews sauce. Then they go to the oven for 20 minutes or until the top is brown.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as me and my family. Feel free to tell me how you liked it.

I wish you a beautiful Christmas holiday!

Hugs, 

Zoé

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