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by Sarah Steimer

These aren’t burnt! It was just a bit dark out when I took the photo. These are a pretty great thrown-together meal when you just have a bunch of odds and ends in the fridge.

  • about 1/2 log of precooked polenta, cut into 12, 1/2-inch slices or larger
  • 2/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 ball fresh mozzarella, sliced into 12 pieces
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons chopped tomato
  • 1 banana pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • crushed red pepper, optional

Place the polenta slices on a parchment paper-covered cooking sheet.

These are the precooked pizzas. This recipe is pretty loose, you can really use whatever is in your fridge or pantry. It’s sort of a healthier alternative to Bagel Bites, I suppose.

Whisk together the tomato paste, vinegar, 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, sugar, oregano, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste. If the mixture still seems a bit thick, thin it out with additional olive oil.

Distribute the sauce over the polenta slices evenly. Top each with a slice of mozzarella.

Combine the onions, tomato and peppers in a bowl. Toss with the balsamic vinegar, 1 teaspoon of olive oil, and salt and pepper. Distribute the mixture over the polenta slices. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper, if using.

Bake the mini pizzas at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until the toppings have browned and the cheese has melted.

Makes 12 mini pizzas.

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