Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Nov 28, 2006 05:49 AM

Muppetgirl- Best Polenta you'll ever eat!! for next time:

muppetgirl, too late now, but the absolutely BEST polenta i've ever tasted/made comes from the Cucina Simpatica cookbook and uses 1/4 c evoo, 1/2 c unsalted butter,2 c. cornmeal, 6c half and half and 2 c chick stock for the liquid, w 1 1/2- 2 T. sauteed minced garlic, and cayenne, pinch of sugar, s & p, 2 c parm. next time!!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. How much Polenta does this recipe make?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Fleur

      s. "10-12 generously as a first course". i'm making it tonight. i'll let you know exact quant later.

    2. With 6 cups of half and half, 2 cups of parm., 1/4 cup of EVOO & 1/2 cup of butter, I imagine that it would be incredibly good. It sounds like Paula Dean gone Italian!

      2 Replies
      1. re: Main Line Tracey

        We will know that we have reached a National Milestone in our solutions for National Obesity when Half 'n Half is sold in gallon jugs, on the shelf where they used to sell skim.

        Sounds great. I could see some micro-diced sage and rosemary leaves in there, not just for taste, but also as a visual tracker for the autopsy doctor, to see how far it made it thru the system before cardiac arrest.

        But seriously... I'll give this a try, with small serving sizes.

        1. re: FoodFuser

          ha ha you are FUNNY!! just remember that it's a lot of polenta that goes with those fats!

      2. Is it pudding-like with all that cream? Trying to figure out what the consistencey would be....

        2 Replies
        1. re: toodie jane

          rather like v thick pudding i suppose. have you not had soft polenta?
          the Ital.peasant equivalent of mashed potatoes.

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            sure, but nothing so far into the richness stratosphere :)

          1. re: yayadave

            yaya, trust a CH to come up with the source!! now what i'd like to know is, HOW did you search for and get this article from 1997- to come up on your search? did you go to a nytimes archive or did you just get it through google? the info about mike etc is on the page for this recipe from the book i cited.

          2. That's not Italian polenta, it's American spoon bread.

            To make the best polenta, you need to start by buying first-rate polenta, such as Anson Mills' Rustic Coarse Polenta Integrale.


            14 Replies
            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              mr. L,i can't tell if you are being facetious. ?
              i much enjoy all your posts; so glad you're an active poster.
              that said, amer spoonbread is NOTHING like this soft polenta recipe.
              i grew up with a Va. cook mother, and spoon bread, called "batter bread" in Va., is basically white cornmeal, milk, eggs,butter. it is a BAKED product, best described as a cornmeal flan .

              so glad, you pointed everyone to anson mills. aren't they great?!

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                On second thought, the ingredient list reads more like a savory Indian pudding.

                I quite seriously do not believe that recipe is similar to anything Mrs. Lepizzera's great-grandmother made in Italy.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  no egg, Mr.L, no egg!

                  and boy, you're getting in deep now- not trusting the word of a VFW 'chef' ! are you wearing a " question authority" headband? !
                  (just joking, just joking!)

                  1. re: opinionatedchef

                    Right, no egg, that's why I said savory Indian pudding rather than spoon bread.

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                      mr. L, indian pudding, savory or not, has egg in it!
                      i know you are a particular fellow, so i am just being particular in this repartee as well!

                      1. re: opinionatedchef

                        That's a new one on me. The recipes I know (e.g. Joy of Cooking) include only cornmeal, milk, molasses, a bit of salt, and sometimes butter, sugar, or spices.

                        1. re: Robert Lauriston

                          Sir L, I think , being a boston-based girl, my reference has always been the famous Durgin Park and their version:
                          on Oct 16, 2006 PrincessBakesALot replied

                          This is directly from the website of Durgin Park, the most traditional place I could think of for Indian Pudding. I've never heard of it topped with condensed milk though. Also, I use a regular glass casserole, not a lot of crocks in my house.

                          BAKED INDIAN PUDDING
                          Although some restaurants add raisins or other
                          flavorings, the only traditional way to doll it up is with a scoop of vanilla ice cream melting fast atop each hot serving.

                          1 1/2 plus 1 1/2 cups milk
                          1/4 cup black molasses
                          2 tablespoons sugar
                          2 tablespoons butter
                          1/4 teaspoons salt
                          1/8 teaspoons baking powder
                          1 egg
                          1/2 cup yellow cornmeal

                          Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. In a bowl mix 1 1/2 cups of the milk with the molasses, sugar, butter, salt, baking powder, egg and cornmeal. Pour the mixture into a stone crock that has been well greased and bake until it boils. Heat and stir in the remaining 1 1/2 cups milk. Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees F and bake for 5 to 7 hours. Serve warm with
                          whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

                          makes 4 to 6 servings

                          report this post

                          1. re: opinionatedchef

                            The egg's not necessary in that, a 1:6 ratio of cornmeal to milk is plenty to thicken the pudding. Joy of Cooking's uses only half that much with no egg.

                            1. re: Robert Lauriston

                              MISTER l'ston, the point was NOT whether indian pudding needed the egg; the point was that my recipe of reference, and apparently many others, calls for eggs, which changes it significantly from polenta.

                              but let's throw down these silly gauntlets.i DO hope you'll try the recipe and enjoy it; that's my whole point to posting it!

                              and while we're on the subject,i'm hoping that maybe you'd meet us at A16, which we've always wanted to try, this march when we make our annual SF genuflecting pilgrimage. ah yes, the aziza sea bass is just a memory whisp on the tip of my tongue...

                        2. re: opinionatedchef

                          You're right OC - the recipes I've used before (Cook's Illustrated American Classics, and Prudhomme's America) both include eggs, as do a couple of books I bought this year and flipped through - ATK Family and the All-American Dessert Book.

                2. re: Robert Lauriston

                  <Quote>12 oz - $5.95

                  10# - $59.50 </quote>
                  Polenta should be poor people's food, not prcious foodie fare!

                  1. re: Anonimo

                    It's worth the extra money. Too bad not everybody can afford the best, but that's true for almost everything except Coca-Cola.

                    Their $4-a-pound grits are the best, too.

                    1. re: Anonimo

                      For the recipe given by the OP, I would use a lower grade polenta than Anson Mills since there are so many other flavors.
                      I use Anson Mills polenta, grits, Carolina Gold rice and other products in the plainest recipes. They are such fine quality and so pure that I want the flavor to stand on its own.
                      They are worth every penny.
                      And frankly, they are an affordable luxury at $8/lb - less than good cheeses, chocolate, coffees, teas - especially if you make them the centerpiece of a meal.

                      1. re: MakingSense

                        The Mike's Kitchen recipe doesn't even call for polenta.

                        If you add up the cost of the incredients, it probably costs more than a simple batch of Anson Mills polenta.