Polenta, it isn't just for foodies
Polenta is among the new trends in food this year. Everywhere I look, every cooking show, every food magazine touts polenta.
As a southerner it reminded me of grits, glorified grits. So I decided to see what all the fuss was about and pulled together this somewhat healthy polenta with grilled peppers and chicken sausage recipe.
It cost me around $7 for the whole recipe which yields between four and six servings.
This is what you will need:
4 cups of water
1 cup cornmeal
1 tbs I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter (or use real butter)
2 tbs dried herbs
4 small red bell peppers
1 cup mushrooms (unless you don’t like them and then leave them out)
3 tomatoes OR two cans of diced tomatoes
3 links of chicken sausage (or any other sausage you prefer) -- I used Al Fresco Chicken Sausage with Sun dried tomatoes. (Coupons here.)
Warm up your indoor grill, if you have one. A stove top griddle or traditional grill works too.
In a sauce pan bring four cups of water to boil. Once the water is boiling add salt and herbs. Add the cornmeal and stir vigorously. If you don’t begin stirring right away the cornmeal will clump. (If clumping does occur don’t fret. You can mash it out with a potato masher.)
Stir, stir, stir.
Once the polenta begins to thicken and pull away from the sides of the pan, cover and turn the heat down to simmer. Let the polenta stay in the pan for 40 minutes, but check on it every few minutes.
Cut the bell pepper into strips, remove the seeds and spray both sides with cooking spray or olive oil. You will want to grill them for about 8 minutes total.
Place your sausage in a skillet or pan that has been preheated and prepped with cooking spray or olive oil and let brown. As soon as the sausage is browned add your mushrooms.
** Add your mushrooms early so that the moisture from the shrooms has time to evaporate.
Add your tomatoes at the end. Adding them too early will make them mushy and that’s just gross.
After the timers is up on your polenta it should be firm and easy to cut into sections. Ideally it will have a crust on the top.
Cut into sections. Remove the peppers form the grill and replace with with the polenta. Grill for five minutes on each side.
Then top the polenta with peppers and sausage combo. Presto!