Thursday, February 17, 2011

Creamy Polenta

Sometimes I challenge myself to use an ingredient in a new way. I generally make cornbread from corn meal, or I will put it on the bottom of my breads, so that it doesn't stick, but I decided I would try my hand at polenta.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with polenta, it is a cornmeal mush, that is similar to grits. It is the Italian equivalent of mashed potatoes. It is really rich and creamy and is great with a stew. I served my polenta with a pan seared pork chop with an onion pan sauce. It was really yummy. Polenta is very easy to make, and I'm sure you have most of the ingredients to make it on hand, or at least readily accessible.

Creamy Polenta 
Makes about 6 servings

1 1/2 cups of chicken broth
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 cups of evaporated milk, or cream
2 Tablespoons of butter
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large pot bring chicken broth to a boil over medium heat.
While Stirring, slowly add cornmeal, add milk, stirring until no lumps remain.
Cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the mixture is creamy and the cornmeal has softened. You are looking for the texture of mashed potatoes.
Stir in butter and cheese, and serve immediately.

Polenta is best eaten right after it is made, and as soon as the cornmeal is just tender. Be careful not to over cook, as it will turn into something between wall paper paste and rubber.

Happy Cooking!


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