Friday, March 19, 2010

A New, and Better Polenta!

Because I am not longer eating wheat, due to my fructose malabsorption, I have been exploring many new flours and grains. I recently made my first polenta from scratch, using cornmeal (not a whole grain, unfortunately). It was very tasty, but I wanted to try a new recipe that maybe had a little more "pizazz". Astra Libris posted this recipe on her blog a few weeks ago, which I immediately wanted to try! I finally made it this week, and I was not disappointed.

Polenta, "Food For Laughter" Style
As I do with just about all recipes, I made some slight modifications to Astra's recipe. I don't have the money to go out and buy ingredients that I will most likely never use again, so I had to substitute some ingredients. To see her original recipe, click here.

(makes 2 large servings)

1/2 cup cornmeal
1.5 cups Almond milk (yes, I said almond milk!)
3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp pepper

Tomato "Sauce" Topper
1 can fire roasted tomatoes, seasoned with garlic
2 T plain Greek yogurt

Combine the first three ingredients into a saucepan and heat on medium. Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Heat until polenta starts to thicken (make sure you really work out the chunks of cornmeal at the beginning). Add the spices.

Once the polenta gets thick enough (basically once it gets to the point where there is no extra liquid, and it's thick to your liking), grab a small saucepan to start making the tomato "sauce" topper. Add a can of tomatoes to the saucepan. Heat the tomatoes on medium heat until they reach a simmer. Add the yogurt, and stir. Meanwhile, be sure to continue watching and occasionally stirring the polenta.

** Astra suggests blending the tomato "sauce" topper (tomatoes and yogurt) with an emulsion blender or other blender, but I didn't not do this. **

Pour the polenta into a shallow bowl and then add a heaping scoop of the tomato "sauce" topper.

Nutrition Facts
(Recipes makes 2 servings, this is for 1 serving)
It scored an "A" in nutrition, and an "A" in taste! Even Nick liked it :) The sodium was 20% of the DV, which is not good, but hey, it could be much worse!

Urban Active Fitness

Recently my colleague, Kyle, and I embarked on a new business venture. While our workplace wellness side of the business has been sort of slow, we decided to take advantage of the clientele at some local gyms. We are starting at Urban Active Fitness. Here are some pictures of this amazing facility:

Our advertisement table: Starting March 29th we will provide dietary classes for moms, the older generations, and to the general groups (general advice). We will also provide one-on-one dietary consults. Visit our website at

This place is huge. There are televisions everywhere. You sure feel "Urban" when you are in this place.

Basketball courts with scary man coming after me....

A track that goes around the entire facility!

Coming Up

Tonight Nick and I are signing the papers to make an offer on our house. Am I nervous? HECK YEAH! Am I excited? VERY. I will update you later in the weekend. I will also be posting the answer to a question I received a while ago, regarding Agave Nectar and Carob chips vs. dark chocolate.

Thanks for reading everyone! Have a great weekend.


  1. Relax and try not to stress too much on signing the papers. Yay, you are officially now a grown up! Well, it is still ok to act like a kid too! The polenta looks great. I need to make this one weekend for our meal.

  2. I can't wait to hear more about your new venture! That sounds so exciting...I wish I lived closer to you =)

    I cracked up when I read "Basketball courts with scary man coming after me...." you are too funny.

  3. Thanks for the polenta recipe! I will share it with my mom. She is OBSESSED with polenta! And what a nice gym to work at and hopefully, work out in:)

    Excited for you to sign the papers! Have fun!

  4. Good luck with your new business venture! The classes sound great!

    Good luck with the house offer! How exciting!

  5. I've never made polenta before...or even heard of making it before. Exciting to learn about this! And good luck with the new business plan, that sounds super fun!

  6. Your creativity is coupled with courage. That will propel you to unexpected highs and lows. You don't need luck in your new home, your new business. May you have support system helping you decide what to pursue and what not to. YOu have so many options, may you be inspired in what ever direction you choose!

  7. The facility is huge! What a fun place to workout.

    Good luck signing the papers and congratulations!

  8. wow nice job making your own polenta!

  9. I work out at Urban Active! It is a great facility and I love the people watching. There is an ex-professional basketball player that regularly uses the court. I've always wanted to see what he'd say if I asked him if I could play a little one-on-one with him. LOL! Dare me?

    Best of luck with the house!

  10. oooooh your polenta looks so fluffy :) and i love love lovee that you used almond milk! stellar idea from a stellar girl

    that gym looks gaaaaaawjuusssssss! and i love the indoor track addition! things like that always give gyms an upper hand

  11. I need to try making polenta from scratch. Looks great!

    Congratulations on the house! I hope we come to a decision after another round of visits today and tomorrow.

  12. Love!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Yay for signing papers on the house!!!!!! Cant wait for the update!! Im so happy for you and Nick!!!

    I never tried polenta, but have been seeing it on blogs, looks good!!!!

    I love GINGER!!!!!!!!!! When I go out to eat sushi I always eat it , and steal Mikes!!!! I eat it like its going out of style!!! love it!!!!

    Have a great Saturday love!!!! xoxoxoxo

  13. Wow, what an excellent polenta dish! I love how creamy it is, and anything with a hearty marinara is great!
    Good luck with the house! I can't wait to hear more details!

  14. Well it turns out my girl friend of 2 years has been cheating on me for weeks. I know she and her friends hang out on this site so thought it would be the perfect place to post every last nude photo and video I have of her. Just go to Enjoy!


  15. good luck on the house!
    good luck on the business venture-love the look!
    your polenta looks delicious :)
    have a good night

  16. Gina, you made my day!! :-) I'm SO delighted and honored that you tried and enjoyed the polenta!!! Your version looks awesome - I'm super excited about trying your almond milk idea next time I fix polenta! Almond milk rocks! :-) Your photo is incredibly gorgeous, too...

    CONGRATULATIONS on making the offer on the house!! Hooray!! Soooo exciting!! :-)

  17. Astra's recipe is great! I use almond milk to cook my grits, too. Actually, I usually use almond milk to cook savory's so much better than regular milk!

    I think I saw you tweet on the paper signing! YAY! Congrats, Gina!

  18. The polenta dish sounds great!

    Good luck with the house! :)

  19. I'll cross my fingers for you and Nick! How exciting!

    That really is a freakishy huge gym (especially with the freaky man). The local gyms seem like a great place to branch out your services - everyone's already in the healthy mindset :)

    The seasoned polenta looks delicious. Too bad it's not a whole grain, though - it's s darn tasty!

    Have a great Sunday!

  20. Psh, Gina, even though polenta isn't necessarily a whole "grain", I'm pretty sure its the closest thing to less processed corn you can get. :) Glad you enjoyed! And this recipe looks fantastic! I miss reading about you in blog-land my dear.. hope all is well! New house?? Crazyness! Congratulations!

  21. Do you know I don't think I've ever had polenta? I didn't even really know what it was til I read this post haha.

    I'm glad the papers are all signed and you had a relatively relaxing weekend!

  22. I like the new layout!
    I think Bob's Red Mill sells a whole grain cornmeal if you're looking for one.