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Roasted Vegetable Salsa with Grilled Polenta Cakes

Yield 11 servings (serving size: 1 topped polenta cake)
The salsa for this recipe makes enough to serve over chicken for another meal or with crackers for a snack. Store extra salsa in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • 4 1/2 cups (1-inch) cubed peeled eggplant (about 1 medium)
  • 2 cups (1-inch) cubed red bell pepper (about 1 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups (1-inch) pieces onion (about 1 medium)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 whole garlic head
  • 2 cups (1-inch) pieces seeded tomato (about 2 medium)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 (17-ounce) tube refrigerated polenta, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • Cooking spray

Nutrition Information

  • calories 73
  • fat 1.6 g
  • satfat 0.2 g
  • monofat 1 g
  • polyfat 0.3 g
  • protein 2 g
  • carbohydrate 13 g
  • fiber 3.1 g
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • iron 0.7 mg
  • sodium 187 mg
  • calcium 20 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.

  2. Place eggplant, bell pepper, and onion in a single layer on a large jelly-roll pan. Drizzle vegetables with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

  3. Remove white papery skin from garlic head (do not peel or separate the cloves). Cut off pointed end of garlic head 1/4 inch from top. Wrap garlic in foil, and place on pan. Bake at 425° for 30 minutes. (Do not stir vegetables.)

  4. Stir tomato into vegetables, and bake an additional 10 minutes or until vegetables are beginning to brown. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes.

  5. Unwrap garlic. Separate cloves; squeeze to extract pulp into a food processor. Discard skins. Add roasted vegetables, lemon rind, and next 3 ingredients to garlic pulp; pulse 12 times or until chunky, scraping sides of bowl once. Set aside.

  6. While vegetables bake, heat a cast-iron grill pan over high heat 4 minutes. While pan heats, pat polenta slices dry with paper towels; coat both sides with cooking spray. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add polenta slices, in batches, to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until thoroughly heated and scored with grill marks. Remove from pan; keep warm.

  7. Spoon 1 1/2 tablespoons salsa over each polenta cake, reserving remaining salsa for another use. Serve warm.

Cooking Light Gluten-Free Cookbook