Polenta with Butter and Parmesan

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The Pasta Man is a young lawyer from Washington, DC. He cooks a lot of pasta and other things, too. He blogs at www.thepastamanblog.com.

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Polenta is one of those things that makes you wonder exactly what you’ve been doing with your life. OK, that’s an overstatement, but still, you can whip up this delicious, rich, corny and creamy side dish in about fifteen minutes with minimal work and expense. It’s only about three ingredients.

I buy polenta – rough ground cornmeal – from the Whole Foods bulk bins, and it’s comically cheap. If you’re waiting for the catch, the catch is that it took you (however many years old you are) to figure this out, and what’s your excuse? Or maybe you knew all about polenta — knew about it your whole life, in fact. Well, good for you.

In any event, I like to serve this as with meats braised in a savory sauce, like short ribs in red wine, or anywhere you’d normally serve mashed potatoes. It’s also great the next day under a fried egg, for breakfast.

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Polenta with Butter and Parmesan

Ingredients

  • 1 cup polenta (rough ground cornmeal)
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 large chunk parmesan (about 1/4 cup after blending)
  • Salt to taste

Directions

  1. Blend parmesan in Magic Bullet.
  2. In a large pot, heat four cups of water and a big pinch of salt over high heat.
  3. When the water is boiling, add the polenta bit by bit, whisking all the while.
  4. Reduce heat to low and cook about eleven minutes until the polenta is very thick.
  5. Turn off the heat and add the butter and then, gradually, the parmesan cheese. Keep whisking and taste for salt.
  6. Serve with a saucy dish.
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