I have had different reactions to the recipes I’ve checked off the list thus far. In some cases I’ve been underwhelmed, (I’m looking at you, curry chicken). In other cases, I have been pleasantly overwhelmed by the results (beef wellington! Chicago Pizza!).
But polenta left me just whelmed.
In part, I blame Giada. Her Everyday Italian cookbook has three different recipes for polenta. So I figured, it has to be great. At the same time, I knew it was simple, so it wasn’t going to blow my mind or anything.
Polenta is made by continuously whisking cornmeal and water over heat until its soft and thickened. I remember watching this special episode of Iron Chef America where Mario Batali was on a team with Rachel Ray. One of their menu items was polenta and Rachel Ray was confined to a single burner, endlessly stirring for the better part of the episode. I found this strangely gratifying.
Anyway, you stir and stir and stir and cook until the cornmeal is tender. Once cooked, I added cream, butter, and Gorgonzola cheese since I was serving as sort of a potato substitute alongside steaks with balsamic vinegar. Stir to melt the cheese and that’s it.
The polenta was, well, fine. The cheese was sharp and it was creamy and filling. But Giada just seemed to promise me so much more which her description of the warm comforting goodness of an Italian staple. Handsome Husband responded with a “It’s cornmeal…what were you expecting.” (shrugs shoulders)
Hence, I was whelmed.
UNFORESEEN BONUS: Meh.
We did determine that my polenta undertaking cost about $1.00, so I guess polenta has that going for it. The low cost endeavor is a sharp contrast to this weekend’s Crown Roast Affair (ahh, a clue!!), which requires some investment. Apparently I also decided that investment = a title: A Crown Roast Affair. Sounds very cosmopolitan.
See you on Monday,
xoxo The Flyover Foodie
p.s. Bonus points if you know the movie source of today’s blog title!