Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Polenta with Goat Cheese and Capicola

1 cup polenta
2 cups beef broth (fat and gluten free)
1 1/4 cups water
3 oz goat cheese
1 oz grated Parmesiana Reggiano
1 oz Capicola

Preheat oven to 350.
In baking dish, mix 1/4 cup water into polenta creating a slurry and stir well to help eliminate lumps. Then slowly mix in remaining liquid striving to avoid clumping of polenta. This helps ensure a smooth final product without requiring you to constantly stir.  Bake in oven for 50 minutes.
Chop goat cheese and Capicola (delicious, very thinly sliced Italian meat)
Remove Polenta from oven and stir in chopped ingredients
Sprinkle on Paremesiana Reggiano in thin layer over the top
Bake for 10 more  minutes

Creates 12 small or 6 larger servings. You can eat immediately as a soft polenta or place in refrigerator and cool until firm. Firm product is also delicious when reheated, but I do recommend eating some straight out of the oven (careful there's hot cheese in there!) because there's a thin crispy layer of Parmesiana Reggiano over the top and it's a great combination of textures. But it's great reheated and the Capicola was like tiny crispy surprise bits of joy sprinkled throughout.   I ate it as a side with leftover Carlie-made Lasagna, and then in the morning I had 2 small servings for a quick and easy breakfast before heading off to the doctor. I couldn't wait for it to heat up and tasted a bite of it while still cold which was yummy, but when reheated it had this great texture ... something between cheesy cornbread and polenta.

You've got to try this if you like Italian food. If you're used to Southern Italian meals like the food from Cicily, you may not be used to polenta. It's a corn meal and can be served in all sorts of ways most of which are vegetarian or vegan. This particular way is really tasty, but does have both meat and milk products in it so is obviously neither.

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