Polenta Alla Veneziana Recipe

Polenta Alla Veneziana Recipes

Ingredients :

4 cups cold water or vegetable stock or more as needed

1 cup coarse cornmeal for polenta


freshly ground black pepper

1 cup brown vegetable stock or water

1 cup diced yellow onions

2.5 cups asparagus, cut into 1-inch lengths

4 cups thickly sliced mushrooms

1.5 cups diced plum tomatoes (optional)

2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley

2 tsp finely minced garlic

1 tbsp grated lemon zest

Method :

Stir the water or stock and cornmeal together in a large heavy saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring often and scraping the bottom of the pot, until the mixture is thick and no longer feels grainy on the tongue, about 30 minutes. If it still feels grainy and all the liquid has been absorbed, add more, stirring it in well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm over hot water. Keep the polenta in a soft state by adding water or stock from time to time. Or pour it into a sheet pan lined with baker's parchment. Refrigerate. When firm, turn out onto a work surface and cut into triangles or finger lengths; warm in the oven or broiler.

Bring the vegetable stock to a simmer in a sauté pan. Add the onions and cook, covered, over moderate heat, until the onions are tender and translucent, about 15 minutes. Add the asparagus and mushrooms and stir well, simmering uncovered for 5-7 minutes until tender. Add the optional diced tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and stir in the parsley, garlic and lemon zest. Warm through. Spoon this mixture over either soft or baked polenta and serve at once.

Note: White mushrooms can almost always be found at the supermarket. If you can find brown mushrooms, chanterelles, or other wild mushrooms they will add a greater depth of flavor to this dish. Dried mushrooms soaked in hot water and drained also can intensify the flavor: strain the soaking liquids through cheesecloth and add them to the sauce for an even richer ragout. When asparagus is not available, increase the mushroom quantity to 5-6 cups. This cause can also be used over pasta or rice or stirred into a basic risotto.

Serves 4

This is a dinner divine. The creamy polenta is a fine support player to a rich ragout of mushrooms, asparagus and tomato.

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