BaltimOregon to Maine

Locavore Cooking with Southern Efficiency and Northern Charm

The Pleasure of Parmesany Polenta, Topped with a Toothsome Ragout

with 4 comments


Borlotti (Or Rather Pinto) Beans in Tomato Sauce with Creamy Polenta

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

Written by baltimoregon

February 23, 2009 at 2:31 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , ,

4 Responses

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  1. So great to find another local food blogger in these parts 🙂 And you lived in the east coast too. I actually blogged about that same recipe about a month ago… I LOVE the heirloom beans cookbook.


    February 24, 2009 at 10:39 am

  2. wow you need to hire her photographer 🙂


    February 24, 2009 at 6:00 pm

  3. Arg! I need to figure out what’s wrong with my camera. Or else invest in an SLR from B&H when I’m in New York.


    February 24, 2009 at 6:44 pm

  4. grits by any other name….


    December 14, 2009 at 6:02 am

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