I have a soft spot for polenta. I love to slice it about half an inch thick and sear it in a hot frying pan before covering it with some of our canned tomato sauce or other yummies. It`s also wonderful baked in the oven with an egg and salsa.
I didn`t grow up eating polenta. It`s something I buy from time-to-time and wish I`d eat it a whole lot more. It`s generally after eating it that I wonder why I don`t eat it more often. I know that this was the case when we had a delightful evening out with a friend last evening and I had an appetizer which consisted of polenta, goat cheese, pepper puree. It was stunning – and I knew I had to eat more polenta (even though it was the second time I`d had it in a week).
I knew making polenta couldn`t be that tough – but I was floored on how easy it was. Here`s the ingredients for a basic polenta:
- 0.5 cup milk – whole is supposedly best but we used skim
- 2 cups water
- Parmesan cheese (optional)
- 1 cup corn meal (coarse is best)
Bring the milk and water to a near boil. Whisk in cornmeal in a steady stream. Whisk the mixture until it reaches the thick consistency of oatmeal. This will take 2-5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for few moments (not too long though – it will start to set). Dump contents onto parchment paper, roll and place in freezer for 10 minutes (we did this on a cutting board). You`re done.
It really is that easy.
There are many other ways to cook with it – we`ll share some as we experiment further. In the meantime, I plan to pan fry a few slices with tomato sauce as soon as possible.
Any favorite polenta recipes out there (either for making it or cooking with it after the fact)?