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Spicy Kale with Polenta

Crushed red pepper adds a hint of spice and goat cheese mellows out the flavor in this polenta dish.

Spicy Kale with Polenta


  • 3¼ cup (780 ml) water
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 cup (180 g) polenta, uncooked
  • ½ teaspoon salt, optional
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup (120 g) goat cheese
  • 1 ounce (30 g) reduced fat cream cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons (30 ml) extra virgin olive oil, optional
  • ¼ cup (30 g) medium onion, peeled. diced
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 small garlic clove, peeled
  • 8 ounces (225 g) crimini mushrooms
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) dry white wine
  • 1 cup (70 g) kale, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons pine nuts, toasted


  1. Bring 3 cups (720 ml) water and thyme to a boil in a medium saucepan. Gradually add polenta, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Reduce heat to medium; cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until thick, stirring constantly. Discard the thyme sprig.
  2. Place egg, goat cheese, and cream cheese into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure lid.
  3. Select Variable 1.
  4. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 5.
  5. Blend for 5 to 10 seconds.
  6. Add the egg mixture to the polenta, stirring to combine. Remove from heat.
  7. Coat an 8-inch (20 cm) square baking dish with cooking spray. Spoon polenta into the dish, spreading evenly. Keep warm.
  8. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 Tablespoon oil to the pan.
  9. Add onion, red pepper flakes, garlic and mushrooms. Sauté 10 minutes or until tender.
  10. Add the wine and cook 2 to 4 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Remove mushroom mixture from the pan and keep warm.
  11. Return the pan to medium heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pan.
  12. Add the remaining ¼ cup (60 ml) water, kale, and remaining salt and pepper.
  13. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes or until tender.
  14. Top the polenta with the mushroom mixture, kale and toasted pine nuts.
  15. Cut into pieces and serve.

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