Polenta is a boiled, slow-cooked cornmeal "mush" -- typically made with coarsely ground yellow corn meal. In some regions of Italy (especially in the north), it's a beloved everyday dish and is topped with meat, fish, pasta sauce, cheese, or vegetables. Cooled and hardened, polenta can be sliced, sauted, or grilled, and served sweet or savory.
You can purchase precooked, ready-to-heat-and eat “solid polenta” in sausage-like tubes, plain and in flavors such as basil, garlic and sundried tomato. In my grocery store, it is found on the pasta aisle.
Slices of polenta can be easily turned into hors d’oeuvres, first courses and sides. They provide a firm base for just about anything. Just pan fry or heat them in the oven.
I baked these in the oven for about 20 minutes, until the edges turned a bit crispy.
1 chopped yellow onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3/4 cup good red wine
1 (14.5-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
Add the chopped onion and let it cook to translucent for about 5 minutes, stirring often. Then I add the garlic and cook for a minute. Pour in the wine, cook for a minute. Add all the cans of tomatoes. Add salt, pepper, sugar, basil, red pepper flakes, and parsley. Stir to combine and cook over medium heat for 20-30 minutes.
For step by step instructions on our favorite Tomato and Meatball recipe (it is oh so good) visit this post.
If you like Polenta, you will probably also like it's cousin Grits. One of my favorite grit recipes is Shrimp and Grits, made with sausage, ham and tomatoes.