I actually managed to make a decent polenta!

So I was down in Manitou Springs recently, and happened to eat at a place called the Coquette Bistro & Creperie. Didn’t get crepes, but I did get vegan polenta, which was incredible.

Polenta

It’s buried in there somewhere!

Anyhow, so I decided to try making polenta. I’ve gotten polenta in a tube before, but it’s just not very good. So I got me a package of corn grits. You have to cook it on the stove for 30-45 minutes while it thickens. Thing is, it sputters at you pretty regularly, and it has to be stirred almost constantly so it doesn’t scald the pot. So I used a spoon with a rather long handle to get me out of harm’s way, pulled a chair into the kitchen, and watched an episode of Dexter while I sat there and stirred. So, not too bad.

The restaurant’s polenta had black beans in it, so I’d also made some black beans in advance which I dumped into the pot. And while the restaurant’s polenta was also vegan, I’m not, so I added in a bit of butter.

So after that 45 minutes, I dumped it into a greased bowl, let cool for 10-15 min, then dumped on a cutting board. It totally congealed and held its shape. So I sliced it into bars, and pan-fried it with some olive oil. Came out pretty amazing, and I made way too much so now I’ve got polenta in the freezer as well.

As for the vegetables, I chopped up onions, red pepper, garlic, kale, shredded some carrots, and stir-fried these in olive oil. At the end I topped it all off with cilantro, a bit of basil, shredded romano, and almonds.

homemade polenta

Came out really good, I was quite pleased. Wish I’d been able to figure out a version of the carrot-based sauce that came with the original meal, but it was still good without that. So I’ve actually been eating the leftovers for breakfast lately, and I’ve got two more brick in the fridge that I need to fry up, not to mention another whole chunk in the freezer to eat eventually.

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