Roasted Napoleon of Portobello, Tomato and Polenta, Basil Pesto

Roasted vegetables and polenta are constructed into a Napoleon of intense earthy flavor, complemented with a fresh basil and pine nut pesto.


Polenta discs:

4 cups milk

1 cup polenta cornmeal

4 Tbsp butter

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Extra virgin olive oil


16 polenta discs

16 medium portobello mushroom caps, stems removed, cleaned

4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into 16 ½” thick slices

Extra virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 Rosemary “skewers”

4 Tbsp pine nuts, toasted


2 cups Tightly packed basil leaves

3 cloves Garlic

1/3 cup Pine nuts

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp water

Extra virgin olive oil, as needed


For Polenta:

  1. In a large russe, bring milk to a gentle boil. Pour the polenta slowly into the milk, whisking constantly.
  2. Reduce heat to a simmer, add butter, salt and pepper and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until mixture is very thick, 45-60 minutes.
  3. Pour polenta into a 9×12” baking dish brushed with extra virgin olive oil. Smooth top of polenta to be even throughout.
  4. Cover dish with plastic wrap and let cool until completely firm, 2-3 hours.
  5. Using a 2” biscuit cutter, cut 16 discs. Reserve for napoleon assembly.

For Vegetables:

  1. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Stack vegetables on top of each other, seasoning with salt and pepper between each layer. Stack as follows from bottom to top: polenta, tomato, mushroom, polenta, tomato, mushroom.
  3. Place napoleon in the middle of a piece of tinfoil. Drizzle top of napoleon with extra virgin olive oil. Wrap napoleon tightly with foil and place on a baking sheet.
  4. Bake napoleons for 30 minutes or until cooked through. Meanwhile, make pesto. When done, unwrap and allow to set for 5 minutes.

For Pesto:

  1. Place basil, garlic and pine nuts in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times until coarsely minced. Add cheese, salt and pepper to mixture and pulse again until combined.
  2. With the motor running, stream in the lemon juice, water and olive oil through the feed tube until desired consistency is achieved. Pesto should be smooth and thick in consistency.

For Service:

  1. Arrange napoleon in center of the plate and place a rosemary skewer through the top layer.
  2. Serve with pesto and toasted pine nuts.

One Response to “Roasted Napoleon of Portobello, Tomato and Polenta, Basil Pesto”


  1. Level 5 Menu Project – Del Luogo « Delicious Ventures - July 12, 2010

    […] Second Course: Roasted Napoleon of Portobello, Tomato and Polenta, Basil Pesto […]

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