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Jan 6, 2007 01:28 PM

Using polenta for cornbread

I havea recipe for Cornbread with Pancetta that I just decided I want to make with our ribs tonight. However, I am having a very lazy day with no desire to leave my apartment to go to a grocery store for stone-ground or regular yellow cornmeal, as the recipe calls for. There is an italian butcher/specialty store across the street which I can pull myself together enough to schlep to - of course, that is where I will get the pancetta too. Question: I know they sell boxes of polenta....but isn't that essentially cornmeal? Can I use it for my cornbread?

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  1. I think polenta has a different grain than if you were to use regular cornmeal... this epicurious recipe uses polenta -- maybe you could use this as a guide for liquid amounts etc?

    1. Polenta is cornmeal. As long as it is the proper grind for your recipe, they are substitutes.

      1. Yes, polenta is cornmeal. I did this last week because I had some polenta around, and it was rather coarse and thus my cornbread was kinda crunchy. But it was really tasty! I used sour cream and it was plenty moist.

        1 Reply
        1. re: atomic

          I used the polenta, actually...when I picked up the box, it was labled as "Instant" polenta, which caused me some concern, but I went with it anyway. And it came out perfect, in terms of texture. However, for some reason I decided to cut the sugar in half because I didn't think I wanted it too sweet...but it ended up that it wasn't sweet enough. Still good though!

        2. Would you share your conbread with pancetta recipe, please?:)

          3 Replies
          1. re: morebubbles

            Sure! But it's not is from epicurious. As mentioned, if you use instant polenta that's fine,and probably not a good idea to cut the sugar unless you desire a not-sweet cornbread (which, to reiterate was still good!) :)

            I liked this recipe because while I love to cook, I am not a super baker and this was easy. That and I will eat anything with pancetta in it.


            1. re: Justpaula

              Thank you. I don't have a tried-and-try cornbread recipe yet (and also I have finely ground cornmeal that I think was meant for making polenta). Point taken about cutting down sugar (which is something I tend to do as well, sometimes too much..), thanks!

              1. re: morebubbles

                You're welcome! I did just get invited for din at his parents house (he and his Dad and bro have been watching football all day and surely drinking, so he prob needs a ride home), where his Mom has made ribs. I said I would bring the rest of the cornbread, but not sure if his family would like it not sweet. So, he suggested making a simple syrup and brushing it on top. Ijust did that...and will let you know how it turned out.

                P.S. - you have to love a man who after a day of beer and ball will say, "Hey, babe, perhaps a simple syrup is a good idea". :)