The Pleasure of Parmesany Polenta, Topped with a Toothsome Ragout
For the rest of winter, I pledge to make more polenta: hand-stirred, coarsely ground corn made creamy with unsalted butter and a generous grating of parmesan cheese. Resist buying those ubiquitous fat tubes of prepared polenta. It’s not hard to make–really just yellow grits. Just sit by the stove with a book for 30 minutes of patient stirring.
This stick-to-your ribs tangy tomato sauce and polenta dish, from Heirloom Beans by Vanessa Barrington and Steve Sando is a real keeper. Pinto beans were a surprisingly fitting substitute for the borlotti (or cranberry) beans I couldn’t find. They have a similar speckled exterior that disappears upon boiling, though they cook up softer than cranberry beans. The sauteed fennel and grated carrot gave the tomato sauce a real sweetness that married well with the polenta.
Any other polenta dishes to suggest? I’m hooked. I’ll probably next tackle Mark Bittman’s polenta breakfast pizza.
|Serves||4 to 6|