Inspired by Antonio’s cooking, Dennis and I decided to try a recipe from his cookbook – polenta with sautéed spinach and pine nuts. We put a Belize spin on it, though. A number of years ago when visiting Tortola, BVI, we had a similar dish of polenta with local greens. They call the polenta "funghi" in the BVI. I had bought a bunch of fresh greens at the Thursday Street Fair Market in downtown Rochester. It looked to me like the greens were amaranth, although the Asian vendor didn’t know what it was called in English. In Belize you can grow amaranth, although there it is called callaloo. He did assure me that Americans do not like it, and he mostly sells it to Asians and Europeans. The massive bunch was $1.00. I also got a large bunch of what he called Thai bok choy. So we used those instead of the spinach and used toasted sesame seeds and sunflower seeds instead of pine nuts. Otherwise, we followed the recipe pretty closely (didn’t have quite enough basil on hand). We paired it with a nice red wine from Tuscany, and it was a delicious meal. I foolishly forgot to take pictures of it, so you will have to take my word for how nicely the dark green amaranth set off the golden polenta. We can add this to our growing repertoire of dishes we will be able to adapt to ingredients easily available in Belize.
Earlier in the day, I took more photos of our garden. Here is a montage of some of them. I added them to the album you can see at http://picasaweb.google.com/lulalaney/MinnesotaGardenInMidJune02#