Saturday, August 6, 2011

Polenta Bites with Tomatoes and Crab

Both Clare and I have been growing tomatoes in pots on our deck.  We are growing two types: Roma tomatoes and some other tomato.  (Both of us cannot remember the name of the second tomato.)  The "other" tomatoes have been ripening fairly quickly.   They are bite-size, orange tomatoes.  When I saw them, thoughts of a tapa or appetizer immediately came to mind.  Tomatoes ... polenta ... and crab.  The only question was how to incorporate these three ingredients. 

In my mind, I thought immediately of little polenta "sandwiches."  The problem is that these ingredients could not stand on their own in a sandwich.  I overcame that problem with a toothpick.  The polenta serves as the "bread," embracing one whole tomato and 1 big piece of lump crab.  To complete the dish, I microwaved it for one minute.  This heated up the polenta and the crab, and softened the tomato just a little.  

A Chef Bolek Original
Serves 2

6 bite-size tomatoes (cherry tomatoes or heirloom tomatoes)
12 slices of premade polenta
6 large pieces of lump crab
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt, to taste
Pepper to taste

1.  Bake the polenta.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Place a piece of aluminum foil in a baking sheet.  Drizzle a little olive oil on the foil and spread the oil so that it covers the entire sheet.  Place the slices of polenta on the sheet, salt and pepper both sides.  Drizzle a little more oil over the top of the polenta.  Bake the polenta for fifteen minutes.  Turn on the broiler and finish the polenta under the broiler for about three minutes.

2.  Prepare the polenta.  Let the polenta cool down.  Stack about four pieces of polenta on top of each other.  Cut the sides of the polenta so that you have a square.  Cut the square in half, so that you have eight pieces.  Repeat with the remaining polenta slices.

3.  Plate the dish.  Plate by taking the toothpick and putting a piece of polenta, along with the crab, tomato and another piece of polenta,  Repeat until you have a total of six "bites."

4.  Heat the dish (optional): Heat the bites in the microwave for one minute.  Serve immediately.


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