I love rustic stuff. Whether it's an old, abandoned barn, antique silverware or a provincial plate of food, my passion for all things pastoral runs deep.
I'm not sure where this affinity for primitive things comes from. Maybe it was all those Little House On the Prairie books I read as a child? All I know for sure is that I love it, love it, love it.
And as far as dinner is concerned, it doesn't get much more rustic than polenta.
Polenta is simply cornmeal boiled into porridge. (Yes, porridge.) If you like grits, you'll like polenta. The preparation is similar - cornmeal is boiled in liquid, then butter is folded in. Add some parmesan cheese and spicy sausages and you've got a simple but hearty dinner.
It isn't the most complicated or sophisticated meal but that's what makes it so lovely. The beauty is in its simplicity.
* If you're a fellow fan of rustic stuff, check out my "Rustic Home" Pinterest board, and also my Etsy shop, which specializes in vintage kitchenware and home decor.
Parmesan Polenta & Sausages
This recipe is a savory preparation of polenta, but don't be afraid to
experiment with sweeter add-ins for breakfast and dessert.
Polenta pairs well with honey, vanilla and cinnamon.
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
1/2 cup creme fraiche
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound spicy Italian sausages
Cook the sausages on the grill or in a saute pan, then wrap in tin foil and keep warm in the oven until ready to serve.
Place the chicken stock in a large saucepan. Add the garlic and cook over medium-high heat until the stock comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and slowly whisk in the cornmeal.
Whisk constantly to make sure all the lumps are gone, then switch to a wooden spoon. Add the pepper & rosemary and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring constantly. (Be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan thoroughly while you're stirring.)
Turn off the heat and fold in the Parmesan, creme fraiche and butter. Serve hot with extra Parmesan cheese and the Italian sausages on top.
This recipe is adapted from Barefoot Contessa's 'Creamy Parmesan Polenta' from How Easy is That?, 2010.
Welcome! I'm a pie-baking, dog-loving, antique-hunting patriot. I'm a fan of rustic home cooking, the Yankees and scenic drives through the mountains.