Monday, September 28, 2009

The Polenta of Champions

I was given a "log" of polenta a little while back but only just got around to cooking it. I have been trying to stay away from commercial tomato sauces and learn to make more "homestyle" sauces from Italy. I doubt this would classify as "homestyle" but it was damn good. I hope to learn to make proper polenta at some point, but for now the log will do.

Preheat a pan with olive oil, place chilies and one star anise and one clove in the oil to simmer. That will get the essential oils from the clove and the star flowing and should an aromatic quality to the olive oil.

- Two roma tomatoes , diced. Romas are fleshier than beefsteak and vine tomatoes.
- One vine tomato for the moisture.
- One half a white onion.
- Two cloves of garlic.
- One handful of chopped walnuts. (I have big hands, btw)

Sautee all this in a pan and pour an ounce of single malt whisky for sweetness. You can blanch the tomatoes first if you want the skins completely off. I add the classic "Italian herbs and spices" at this point - basil, rosemary, oregano and sage. I also added 1/2 tsp Hungarian paprika to the mix, just because it was there. And yes, I added a bit of salt. In another pan I had browned some ground pork and add that into the mixture.
After cooking that for a while I add it into a pan over top of the now cut up polenta and grate parmesan over top. The oven has been preheated to 450. Covering the pan I put the polenta in and set the dial down to 400. I let it cook for an hour and then let it stand for 10 minutes.


Charlotte said...

Your current addiction is pie!! I love it! How did I not realize you had a cooking blog too? Thanks for the recipe link - can't wait to try it. Although I'm sure mine won't look nearly as pretty as yours!