• 3 cups of stock
  • 1 cup of polenta
  • tbl of butter
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1/4 cup cheese (i used parm)
  • salt and pepper to season

i realized last night that i post a lot of main dishes and very little sides. i still am not sure why, i guess i never really think about a side as something someone would be very interested in. you can literally create a whole dish around a side though. i know i have. so why not post some of the sides we are eating around here? here is one of my favorites, polenta.

i love polenta. believe it or not i just recently started eating it. i guess it was never on my list of foods i love until recently. it’s a great side dish and easier to make than mashed potatoes and much more filling then rice. and please, you add cheese, really. i love cheese. anything with cheese sounds wonderful to me.

i am pretty good at re-creating dishes. it’s just a gift.  what can i tell you (wink wink).  all jokes aside, for some reason i can eat a dish and go home and create it, it’s really been great for e because if we are out and he falls in love with something i can taste it, go home and make it for him. polenta was one of those dishes however i came home and thought, how the heck did they make it.  surprisingly it’s really easy. just a few steps and with in minutes you have a creamy yummy side dish. below, you will find my recipe step by step. this recipe feeds about 4. so if your cooking for a whole crowd, more then 4 people, double the recipe.

this is not a recipe you would probably cook if you’re on a low fat diet, although you could use margarine instead of butter i guess and if you can find a fat free or low fat cream, it would work (do they even make that?). as you probably can tell from a lot of my recipes, i’m not afraid of butter or cream. i eat healthy on a regular basis, i’m really big on salads and soups, i eat things in moderation, so i go for it, i use the butter, i use the heavy cream, i deserve it. don’t be afraid of butter. but mind you, i’m not a nutritionist :-)


i have cooked polenta with water before, i prefer stock. it adds a richness to the polenta that water just can not. i always have veggie stock in the house, it’s really what i prefer to cook polenta in.

bring your stock to a boil and add your polenta. then lower your flame to simmer. mix often.

  1. with in minutes, your polenta will start to thicken, don’t forget to stir. it will bubble up and your polenta will start spurting everywhere. it’s messy and it burns. i find if i leave my spoon in the middle of the pot it doesn’t bubble as much.
  2. with in 5 minutes it will start to get creamy. now is when you want to add your butter, continue to stir.
  3. in another 3 minutes or so, add the cream and cheese. stir and incorporate for about 2 minutes. taste, season with salt and pepper. don’t be surprised if you want to add more cheese or more cream, don’t be afraid. i don’t like mine really cheesy.
  4. take off the heat and let sit covered for about 5 minutes.
when i cook polenta i like to let it sit covered for a good 5 minutes or so. i find it just softens up more and gives the flavors a chance to meld.
polenta is a great side dish for steak, i like to make it when i make my braised beef or lamb, it just gives it that little extra something the meal needs.

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