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Old 08-04-2006, 09:20 AM   #1
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Polenta

Could someone tell me how to make Polenta? All recipes call for adding polenta. Called the name brand company and they are sending brochure but in meantime would like to know how do you fix polenta? Appreciat e your time.

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Old 08-04-2006, 09:26 AM   #2
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Polenta is very easy to make. I like to bring 4 cups of liquid to a boil. You can use water, but I prefer to use stock as it will add much more flavor. Once it is at a boil you want to slowly drizzle in the cornmeal while whisking so that no lumps form. Pour the cornmeal in as slow as you can and don't stop whisking.

Once it is all in turn the heat down to low or med low otherwise it will spatter all over the place. At this point I switch from a whisk to a spoon and continue stirring non-stop. A pinch of salt right now is a good thing to add. As the cornmeal soaks up the liquid it will become thicker and thicker.

You can add anything else you like at this point. A favorite of mine is some shredded cheese. I usually go with a good sharp cheddar, but you can use just about anything. Once it gets to the desired consistency then you are done.
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Old 08-04-2006, 09:28 AM   #3
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Polenta is fine ground cornmeal that you stir into rapidly boiling liquid. You can pay more for a product called "Polenta," or you can also make it from good quality cornmeal. I love it! I like to stir it into stock of some kind, depending upon what it's being served with, or my mood, and it goes with all the same things that pasta or risotto does.
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Old 08-04-2006, 10:05 AM   #4
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Polenta = cornmeal and liquid.

Like CJ says, you can buy dry cornmeal labeled as "polenta" and you can find cornmeal and water already cooked into polenta rolled up in a sausage-like plastic roll that you cut and fry.

You can vary the amount of water to make polenta of different consistencies, from loose, soupy polenta, to very firm for grilling.
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:11 AM   #5
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...and a little wine as the liquid hurts nothing at all either...

I love to make a gratin out of polenta and some roasted butternut squash and lots of Parmesan...
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:17 AM   #6
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I don't stir contantly. I use a heavy pan on the lowest heat possible, cover it and stir every few minutes. It takes about half an hour. I also stir in parmesan cheese near the end.

When it's done, scoop it into a bowl and eat right away or pour into some kind of a mold for later. You can pan fry polenta in butter once it's hardened. Oh, and don't forget the sauces.
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vyapti
I don't stir contantly. I use a heavy pan on the lowest heat possible, cover it and stir every few minutes. It takes about half an hour.
Mine comes together in about 5 minutes (if that).
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:44 AM   #8
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It may also be coarse ground corn meal which I prefer for "polenta".
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Old 08-04-2006, 01:05 PM   #9
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Thanks

Polenta is something I have heard of but haven't fixed myself. Sounds so good w/cheese. Just like oatmeal, I truly think the health aspect of it is of great importance. cjs, what is the recipe for butternut squash and polenta? Sure looked good the way the cook made it for his show. I thank you all for your ideas and hints about adding stock and wine. Makes a difference on the flavor when that 'extra' is put in.

How quickly you all responded. So wonderful that someone pays attention to my question.
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Old 08-04-2006, 02:07 PM   #10
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My recipe for this dish is for 150 - I used to make it at a hotel I worked - but it's real easy.

Cut you butternut in half so you have the bulbous end and the neck end separate. Cut each in half, rub with olive oil and roast till just fork tender. Scrape the 'meat' out of the bulbous halves and mash. Peel the neck halves and cut into thin half circles. Set all this aside or make you polenta while the squash is cooking.

Cook your polenta (12 oz.) and whisk in the mashed squash, 4-6 T. butter and 1 cup parmesan cheese, s&p.

Spread the polenta in the prepared baking dish and arrange the baked squash slices on top in an overlapping pattern.

Scatter small pieces of butter over the gratin and sprinkle with ~1/3 cup more of the parmesan.
Bake in the upper third of the oven for 1 hour, or until bubbling and golden. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.

You can also play with this and use individual serving casseroles - makes a nice presentation.

This is NOT a real healthy dish, just darn good!!
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