I needed a finger appetizer to take to a large boxing day party, so used the Gorgonzola Cheesecake with Polenta Crust recipe that Traci mentioned a week or so ago, but this time I used lower fat Neufschatel cheese and purposefully reduced the cheesecake layer. The result produced about 60 little 1 1/2" squares about 1/2" high that were exactly half polenta and half cheese--and it baked in 30 minutes!
Not exactly classic proportions, but delicious and relatively guilt-free. Too, with this dish I changed the flavors somewhat, leaving out most of the garlic, adding more herbs, and topping the cheesecake with chopped sun dried tomatoes and gluing them in place with a sprinkle of parmesan. It was just the right accent, adding to looks, texture and flavor.
I would do it again, and in fact I will do it again and I want to remember my recipe, so I'm posting.
Start by making the crust:
1 1/3 c cornmeal
3 3/4 cups water
1 t salt
1 tblsp dried basil
1 tblsp dried dill
1 tsp coarse ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated parmesan
Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in cornmeal, salt, pepper and dried herbs. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Fold in parmesan cheese, then cool for about five minutes. Spread warm polenta into the bottom of a greased jelly roll pan. If the polenta gets tacky and stars pulling away, wet the spatula. Set aside, allow to cool.
Set oven to 350.
Begin the filling:
2 lbs Neufschatel cheese
1 lb Gorgonzola or other blue cheese
1 clove smooshed garlic
2 tblsp chopped fresh chives, divided
1/2 c chopped sundried tomatoes
1/2 c grated parmesan cheese
Placed the Neufschatel in a bowl (I use a food processor with mixing blade) and add the eggs one at a time. When creamed, add the blue cheese and garlic and mix until coarsely blended. Stir in half the chives, and pour the cheese mixture over the cooled polenta.
Bake for 30 minutes or until set in the center. Top with the sun dried tomatoes immediately. Use a spatula to press the tomatoes in a bit then sprinkle the parmesan and remaining chives over.
When cool, cut into 1 1/2" squares. Will keep about a week in the refrigerator.