After all the latkes I made for Chanukah (over 8 lbs. of potatoes, 5 zucchini, 2 yellow squash and a bunch of carrots worth), I didn’t want to even look at anything fried or made with potatoes for awhile. But that took away one of my favorite treats: french fries. Searching through the pantry for an alternative side dish, I found a tube of polenta and said, “Aha! I’ve got it! Polenta fries!”
Now I know there are a lot of people who don’t like polenta in a tube but I think it’s delicious; it’s all in what you do with it. Homemade polenta is great too but sometimes I don’t want to wait hours or overnight for the polenta to firm up. When I want fries, I want them NOW!
For those who want homemade polenta: boil 2 cups of water and add 1 cup of polena. Stir, add salt and nutritional yeast (or vegan parm) and continue to stir until it thickens. Then place the polenta into a shallow baking dish that has been sprayed with oil. Spread it evenly and refrigerate it anywhere from 2 hours to overnight – until it hardens completely. Then you can slice the polenta into strips resembling fries.
1 tube of polenta
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. chile powder
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the polenta from the wrapper and cut the tube in half length-wise. Carefully cut the polenta into strips and place onto a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
Mix the spices together in a small bowl (use your favorite spices to make a spice mix that is to your liking – I tend to like things spicy). Spray the polenta strips with cooking spray and sprinkle the spice mix onto the strips evenly. Turn the strips over and repeat on the other side.
Bake for about 15 minutes or until the strips appear golden brown. Turn them and continue to bake on the other side about 10 more minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Remove from oven and serve right away with your favorite dip or condiment.
Our favorite dip for these is a ranch dip which is just a simple mixture of vegan mayo, vegan sour cream, black pepper, dill and chives.
That’s it. Yummy spicy crispy polenta fries with a cool ranch dip and all Vegan.