Creamy Polenta whit Fresh Leeks and Corn
Why this recipe works: Turning, cornmeal into polenta on the stovetop typically requires constant, arm torturing stirring. To make this a hands free operation(and to carve out a little time to cook the leeks and fresh corn), we cook the cornmeal in the microwave. With this approach, the polenta is done in about 20 minutes, and better yet we only have to stop to whisk it once. While the cornmeal cooks, fresh leeks and corn straight off the cob are gently sautéed in butter until they achieve a pleasantly soft texture. The mixture is then divide into two, with half of it incorporated into the cooked polenta and the other half mixed with basil and served on top of the finished dish. We stir two types of cheese into our polenta to both augment its creamy texture and improve its taste. We use mascarpone to add richness to the polenta and parmesan to give a slightly nutty flavor.
Creamy polenta with fresh leeks and corn
Ingredients: serve 4
2 cups whole milk
2 cups medium grind cornmeal salt and pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 leeks, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise and sliced thin
2 ears corn kernels removed from cobs
2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
½ cup mascarpone cheese
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- whisk milk, water, cornmeal, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper in large microwave – safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high power until cornmeal is thick and creamy, 15 to 22 minutes, whisking cornmeal and replacing wrap halfway through cooking.
- Meanwhile, melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add leeks and corn and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Transfer half leek corn mixture to bowl with basil. Cover to keep warm.
- Stir microwaved polenta into saucepan with remaining leeks and corn. Whisk in mascarpone and parmesan cheese. Simmer over medium heat until creamy and mascarpone is heated through about 1 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Divide polenta among individual bowls and top with reserved leek corn mixture. Serve.
Simple side arugula, tomato, and olive salad
Whisk 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar and 5 tablespoons olive oil together in large bowl. Toss dressing with 1 (6 – ounce) bag baby arugula, 1 pint grape tomatoes, cut in half, and ½ cup pitted oil cured black olives, cut in half. Season with salt and pepper. Serve 4
Smart shopping mascarpone
Mascarpone is an acid treated Italian cheese made from cream with a butterfat content of 30 to 46 percent. Its texture is compact, but It’s supple and spreadable. Its flavor is unique mildly sweet and refreshing. Usually distributed in small containers, mascarpone has a very short shelf life, chefs often mix it with cocoa, coffee, liqueurs, or fruits to use as a spread or an accompaniment to fruit. Mascarpone is also used to make the filling for the popular Italian dessert tiramisu.