Parmesan Crusted Polenta with Pesto
Italian-seasoned breadcrumb and Parmesan crusted polenta slices are quickly pan-fried and topped with basil pesto for a delicious appetizer or side dish recipe.
Prep Time 18 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
For the polenta:
- 1 18-oz tube polenta
- 1 egg plus 1 tbsp water
- 1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp olive oil, more if needed to pan fry
For the pesto:
- 1 cup very well packed basil leaves
- 2 tbsp walnuts or pine nuts
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
Slice polenta into slices about 1/2"-thick. My tube yielded ten slices.
Add egg and water to a bowl and beat with a fork or whisk.
Add breadcrumbs and 1/4 cup Parmesan to a separate bowl and stir together.
Dip each polenta slice in the egg, taking care to cover all sides. Lift the slice up and let any excess egg drip off back into the bowl.
Then coat each slice with the breadcrumb/Parmesan mixture, taking care to press the breadcrumbs/Parmesan into the top, bottom, and sides of the slice.
Add 2 tbsp olive oil to a skillet and heat over medium heat. Once hot, add polenta slices in a single layer with some space between them. You'll likely need to cook them in a few batches. Cook for a few minutes, until the bottoms are golden-brown. Flip and cook until the other side is golden-brown. Once done, remove from the skillet and place them on a paper towel-lined plate to absorb any excess oil.
To make the pesto, add basil, nuts, and garlic to the bowl of a food processor. Process until combined and basil leaves are in small pieces. Add oil and process until creamy, scraping down the sides as need be. Add 3 tbsp Parmesan and process until combined.
Spoon pesto sauce over top of polenta slices for serving, or serve it alongside as a dipping sauce.
Calories: 308kcal | Carbohydrates: 20.4g | Protein: 8.6g | Fat: 22.3g | Saturated Fat: 4.5g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 532mg | Potassium: 61mg | Fiber: 1.6g | Sugar: 1.5g | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1.1mg