Easy Grilled Polenta with Fresh Mozzarella and Balsamic Tomatoes

Prep Time 15 min.
Cook Time 18-22 min.
Total Time 15 minutes
Yields 16 Polenta rounds

Ingredients

    BALSAMIC TOMATOES

    • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered
    • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
    • 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon olive oil
    • 1/8 kosher salt

    POLENTA

    • 18-ounce tube refrigerated, prepared polenta
    • 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
    • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
    • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, divided
    • 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into thinly sliced pieces

    Directions

    1. Preheat your grill on medium heat.
    2. Combine tomatoes, basil, vinegar, 1 teaspoon olive oil, and ⅛ teaspoon salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
    3. Using a sharp knife, cut polenta into 16 even rounds. The easiest way to do this is to cut the log of polenta evenly in half, then cut each half in half again, so you have four quarters. Cut each quarter in half and then cut those two rounds in half again, so you have 16 polenta rounds.
    4. Lay polenta out on a baking sheet or large tray and brush lightly with ½ teaspoon of olive oil. Sprinkle ⅛ teaspoon salt and 1/16 teaspoon black pepper lightly across the rounds. Flip the rounds, brush again with the remaining ½ teaspoon of olive oil, and sprinkle evenly with the remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt and 1/16 teaspoon pepper.
    5. Grill the rounds about 10-12 minutes on the first side. Once they begin to develop some light grill marks, flip them and grill for another 8-10 minutes.
    6. Turn grill to low and top each polenta round with some of the mozzarella. Close grill lid, and continue grilling for just a minute or two, until cheese has started to melt but isn't so melted that it's dripping off into the grill.
    7. Arrange cheesy polenta rounds on a serving platter and dollop each generously with balsamic tomato mixture. Alternately, you can pass the balsamic tomatoes separately and let everyone top their own.

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    Recipe Notes

    Grilling: Remember that grills vary widely in temperature settings, so the settings and times you use may need to be adjusted according to your specific grill.

    Alternate Broiling Instructions: You can also cook these polenta rounds indoors under the broiler. Simply preheat your broiler as needed. Then, once you've brushed both sides of the polenta rounds with oil and sprinkled them with salt and pepper, broil them for approximately 8-10 minutes on each side, flipping them when they begin to get a bit golden brown. Add mozzarella and finish by broiling for just another minute or two, until mozzarella begins to melt. Serve topped with balsamic tomatoes.

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