Today Mr. Albie, aka Sir Albus Dumbledore Van Slyke, had to take a very important visit to the vet for his *ahem* special boy kitten surgery. All went well and the best part was that he was wearing the tiniest of kitten bandanas around his neck when I picked him up. With a Thanksgiving print on it! Of course I squealed when I saw it, because how could you not? The second best part about picking him up was that when I arrived there was an calico office cat sitting with her back to me in the dead middle of the check-in counter. Like, so dead middle that I had to find a special place to sign the receipt because she was taking up all usable space. She also kept her eyes closed the entire time and didn’t move a muscle when I gave her a few pets. Stoic office kitties are the best.
Yesterday I got really excited about some sweet potatoes that I was delivered from the fabulous Farmhouse Delivery and so I decided that polenta must be added to my meal plan for the week. I also made a stop at Trader Joe’s after my normal grocery run and picked up some really yummy Red Pepper Spread with Eggplant and Garlic, because I knew it would pair nicely with the root vegetables I already had at home as well as some mushrooms, onion, and of course the cheesy polenta!
This was my first time making polenta, and I’m ashamed to say I didn’t know how simple it is. In the past I had purchased the ready-made polenta in a tube, so I was ready for some creamy cheesy polenta this time! Definitely worth it, let me tell you.
If you’re interested in adding some meat to this dish, I’d recommend some smoked sausage. For our leftovers, we sliced up some sausage, seared it quickly in our cast iron and added it to the veggie mixture.Print
- 1 ¾ cup cornmeal
- 6 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ½ cup finely grated cheese (I used a mixture of cheddar, parmesan, and toscano)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 10oz cremini mushrooms, chopped
- ½ cup beer
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon chipotle red pepper
- red pepper sauce (I used this
- Red Pepper sauce
- from Trader Joe’s)
- smoked sausage
- Bring water to a boil in large saucepan. Add salt. Add cornmeal, ½ cup at a time, whisking constantly.
- Reduce heat to low, and cook polenta for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- After 15 minutes, keep heat on low and add butter and cheese.
- While polenta is cooking, start veggie medley.
- Peel and chop sweet potatoes into small cubes and add to large skillet with olive oil. Cook over medium high heat.
- After 10 minutes or until sweet potatoes start to crisp on edges, add carrots. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Add onion, butter, beer, mushrooms, and spices. Cook for 5-10 minutes, or until veggies are all soft. Serve over polenta. Top with chives, red pepper sauce, and smoked sausage if you’d like some meat!