Fried polenta with swiss chard and goat cheese

I have a ginormous bag of cornmeal in my cupboard. It is so large and cumbersome that it falls on my head every time I open the cupboard door to get anything. It’s become sort of a brutal routine.

“Mornin’, Cheesler,” I say to Cheesler as I open the cupboard in search of coffee, at which point the bag falls reliably on my head… “mornin’, bag of cornmeal”.

Yeah, that’s my cupboard. And before you pick up the phone to call the producers of Hoarders, let me explain that that is my only cupboard in which to store non-perishable food. The only one. See those lists taped to the inside of the cupboard door? I try to keep track of everything so that I don’t have to go rifling around in there if I’m looking for something, the end result of which is almost always the bag o’ cornmeal falling on my head.

Maybe sometime soon I will treat you to a full photographic tour of the Soph n’ Stuff kitchen, although it could pretty much be captured in two shots.

Back to the cornmeal. I had to do something. So, one night when Cheesler was off galavanting with pork ribs somewhere, I made this delightful little supper.

First, I cooked up a vat of polenta. This was an experience akin to stirring up hot lava – it bubbled and spat all over my arms and upper body, causing me to curse loudly and with much vigor – causing much alarm to my dear puppydog. (Have I mentioned we got a dog? He is cute and huge and is named River)

Mysteriously, the bag of cornmeal did not become smaller in size but almost seemed to expand, despite the laws of physics. It is destined to be with me forever, I think. Someday, years from now, it will be me and my bag of cornmeal, sitting out on the front porch sipping iced tea and chatting about the good old days.

Once I had lovingly stirred my vat of hot lava polenta for about 40 minutes, I poured it into a pan and allowed it to cool in the fridge for about an hour.

The first time I made this recipe, I used Kale and was somewhat disappointed. I may have undercooked the kale so it was pretty tough and chewy. This time I sauteed up some swiss chard with water until it was tender.

Once the polenta was cool, I cut it into triangles and fried it up in some olive oil until it was just nicely browned on both sides. Then I topped it with tomato slices and popped it under the broiler in the oven for about 15 minutes, to brown it a bit more on top and also to cook the tomatoes slightly. Then, I placed the cooked chard on top of the tomatoes and finished it all of with some crumbled goat cheese. Num!

Back under the broiler they went, for another 5 minutes, just to soften up the goat cheese a bit. Behold! A delicious and healthy dinner. These also keep well for leftovers the next day, they can just be reheated in a toasted oven.

Here’s the recipe! Fried polenta with swiss chard and goat cheese.


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Categories: Food

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