It is starting to get mighty nippy in Dunedin. Although not quite here yet, winter is certainly around the corner and I am all about hearty, warming food right now. This beef and polenta bake is just what I am craving. The polenta topping is deliciously crunchy while the beef sauce is deep and rich in tomato flavour. The fact that it is dripping in cheese doesn’t hurt either.
You can create one large casserole, or have fun making individual servings in small ramekins. I had these cute little stoneware dishes so I made a serving of spicy, cheesy heaven for each member of the industrial design team. The original recipe calls for red kidney beans, but black beans would work equally well. I went ahead and used both as it stretched the meal a little further and I like the earthy, slightly sweet flavour the black beans contributed.
Serve it up piping hot from the oven with a side of sour cream or some freshly made guacamole (or both).