Food, Recipes

Vegan Appetizer Recipes: Basil Pepper Polenta Fries

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Vegan Appetizer Recipes: Basil Pepper Polenta Fries
Have you ever experienced the urge to try a simply decadent snack? Every now and again most of us experience a craving to nibble on something for the pure thrill of biting into something that is simply outrageously flavorful. My polenta fries recipe delivers a deliciously outstanding amalgamation of perfect crispiness and savory flavor. This crispy, crunchy completely tantalizing treat will make you weak in your knees from the sheer textural and flavor contrasts. This is mouth-watering decadence bridled with the goodness of healthful natural ingredients. My polenta fries recipe affords you the opportunity to relish a soft crunchy treat, yet not have to wade through waves of remorseful guilt afterwards, due to the fact that all of the ingredients are both natural and healthful.
There are several non-vegan versions of fried polenta available. In creating my version, I carefully chose alternatives that bring out the very best possible flavor and allow this recipe to shine as one ridiculously amazing bit of culinary perfection.
My vegan version uses coconut oil, vegan butter as well as nutritional yeast as a topping. Many traditional versions of this recipe use parmesan cheese as topping instead. I believe that nutritional yeast is not merely a substitute, but an improvement on the traditional version.
It has a savory, buttery, creamy flavor that is simply addicting. Not only is it utterly delicious, but great for you as well.

Nutritional Yeast– is a complete protein containing 18 amino acids, including the 9 that your body itself cannot create. Use it to help reduce cholesterol levels, and boost immunity. Excellent source of B vitamins as well. Especially import because it contains B12, which usually found in animals products, and so especially important for vegans.

Cayenne Pepper– Is great to use if you have a cold, as it helps to remove congestion. It helps reduce the intense pain associated with migraine headaches. It also contains anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, and helps to detoxify the body.

Polenta– is made from cornmeal, so it’s excellent for those of us who either choose not to or can’t consume gluten. It also contains dietary fiber that helps our bodies function normally, and protein which helps to maintain the proper running order of our bodies. It helps the muscles and bones to function properly, helps the blood clot and to keep our immune systems in well-functioning.

Basil Pepper Polenta Fries

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Prep Time: 01 hour
Cook time: 10 minutes
Total time: 01 hour and 10 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings
Ingredients
  • 6 cups Water
  • 2 cups Instant Polenta
  • 2 teaspoons Vegan butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Finely Shredded Basil
  • 1 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Nutritional Yeast
  • to taste Salt
  • to taste Ground Pepper
  • 1-2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon Coconut Oil
  • 1 cup Marinara Sauce

Directions

1. Pour water into a saucepan and add the polenta while constantly stirring. Cook the polenta over a medium heat, whisking constantly, for 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat, add 2 teaspoons of vegan butter, ½ teaspoon of finely shredded basil, ½ teaspoon of crushed red pepper, and ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper to taste. Mix well.
2. Spread out the polenta on a baking sheet lightly greased with coconut oil, approximately 1 teaspoon. The ideal measurement for the spread out polenta is about ¾” to 1” inch thick. Allow it to cool at room temperature. Wait at least an hour, making sure the polenta is completely cooled before proceeding. Cut polenta into 1” X 3” strips, using a sharp kitchen knife.
3. Place a frying pan over a medium heat, grease with the tablespoon of coconut oil, and place polenta strips into pan. Watch the polenta vigilantly and turn over as needed. If it starts to stick at all, add another tablespoon of oil.
4. After the polenta turns a golden brown remove from heat. Top with one teaspoon of
nutritional yeast, ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, and ½ teaspoon of crushed red pepper. Adding the toppings adds a splash of color and additional flavor to the polenta strips.
5. Serve with a cup of your favorite marinara sauce for dipping. Happy snacking 🙂

More vegan appetizer recipes: Cumin Garlic Hummus

Cowboy Caviar

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Alexandra Kudukis

Alexandra Kudukis

Alexandra Kudukis is a freelance journalist currently writing for Dirva, Draugas News, and Draugas Newspapers, contributing articles in both English and Lithuanian. She began her informal journalistic training at the tender age of four when she began attending concerts with her mother’s best friend Jane Scott, the premier rock music reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Everything she knows from the structure of a good article to conducting an engaging interview- including how to be gracious and kind even in the most difficult of situations, she learned from Jane. She has completed her first novel, a dynamic struggle of a woman letting go of childhood dreams while attempting to balance a horric home life and burgeoning career. Alexandra has also just completed her first full-length screenplay chronicling the young adult lives of children from Eastern European families, misfits trying (and failing) to find success as first generation Americans. She has an M.P.A. from Cleveland State University, which has provided her a broad base on which to base her career.Her blog details the trials and triumphs of an aspiring writer. She studied German and Russian as an undergraduate and loves to travel. Alexandra currently resides in Fountain Valley, CA with her animal companions, two cats Isabella and Victoria and Pierre, a rescue pigeon.
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