Did you ever see a recipe, and that one led you to another one, then another one, and… well, you get the point. I received a recipe over the weekend for an appetizer with polenta rounds that looked absolutely delicious, and planned on making it, then thought I should probably wait until I actually need to make some hors d’oeuvres. So, I continued looking online for different types of recipes which contained polenta and came across one from Rachael Ray, that got tremendous reviews and looked scrumptious, which led me to a recipe from Alton Brown. I definitely plan on trying Rachael’s soon, but made Alton’s polenta side dish, with a few modifications, to go with some leftover rib-eye I had in the fridge. This was my first time making and trying polenta, so wasn’t really sure what to expect, but I really liked it!! This also pairs very well with fish or chicken.
- 1 tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for grilling or sautéing the polenta, if desired
- 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1 cup chicken stock or broth
- 1 cup milk (I prefer skim) + additional to thin, if desired
- 1/2 cup coarse ground cornmeal
- 1 1/2 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup Parmesan, grated
- 1/4 cup Sharp Cheddar, grated
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the red onion and salt, and cook until the onions begin to turn translucent, approximately 4 to 5 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low, add the garlic, and saute for 1 to 2 minutes, making sure the garlic does not burn.
- Turn the heat up to high, add the chicken stock or broth, bring to a boil.
- Gradually add the cornmeal while continually whisking.
- Once you have added all of the cornmeal, cover the pot and cook for approx. 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes to prevent lumps.
- Once the mixture is creamy, remove from heat and add the butter and pepper.
- Once they are incorporated, gradually add the Parmesan and Cheddar.
- Season with additional salt, according to taste.
- If you want the polenta creamier, you can thin with a little cream or milk to get desired consistency. Otherwise, serve as is, or pour the polenta into a cake pan lined with parchment paper and place in the refrigerator to cool completely. Once set, turn the polenta out onto a cutting board and cut into squares, rounds, or triangles. Brush each side with olive oil and saute in a nonstick skillet over medium heat, or grill.
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