A perfect polenta recipe
This creamy, soft polenta is a delicious side dish or entrée! Because I pulse the cornmeal in the blender before I cook it, it comes together in no time, so it's perfect for busy nights
- 5 cups water, milk or chicken stock or vegetable stock
- 1 Cup medium or coarse cornmeal/polenta
- to taste Kosher salt
- 2 unsalted butter or extra-virgin olive oil plus more oil to sear or grill if desired
Using the Presoaking : Combine water with cornmeal in a large mixing bowl and let stand, covered, at room temperature overnight. When ready to cook, scrape soaked cornmeal and water into a large saucier or saucepan and set over high heat.
Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Let boil, stirring frequently, until polenta thickens enough that it starts to spit. Lower heat immediately to prevent spitting and continue to cook, stirring frequently with a spoon or silicone spatula and scraping bottom to prevent scorching, until polenta becomes thick and pulls away from side of saucepan, about 30 minutes for presoaked cornmeal and 50 minutes for dry cornmeal. Season with salt.
Stir in butter or olive oil, using either a spoon, a silicone spatula, or a whisk. Polenta will become glossy from the added fat, and should feel rich, creamy, and smooth. If polenta forms lumps, beat vigorously with a stiff whisk to remove. If polenta becomes too firm or begins to set, add a small amount of water, stock, or milk and beat in with a whisk until liquid is fully incorporated and no lumps remain.
Serve right away with accompaniment of your choice.