Thursday, May 19, 2005

Creamy Polenta with Parmesan and Sausage

Creamy Polenta with Parmesan and Sausage (Adapted from Mark Bittman)

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 sweet Italian turkey sausages
2 cups chicken broth, divided
1 cup coarse cornmeal
water, as needed
3 ounces (about 3/4 cup) fresh grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons butter
freshly ground black pepper.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium high. Add sausages - cook, turning occasionally, until cooked through and well browned on all sides, about 16 to 20 minutes. Set aside - when cool enough to handle, slice sausages on the diagonal into coins.

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 cup broth and cornmeal - season with salt. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to a simmer and whisk in remaining 1 cup broth. Continue to cook, whisking often and adding additional water, as needed, to keep mixture loose, until the cornmeal grains feel soft and tender - this takes about 30 to 40 minutes. You'll end up using roughly 2 1/2 cups of extra water - the consistency of the polenta when it is done should be thick, but not stiff - similar to sour cream.

Remove from the heat and stir in Parmesan and butter. Season with fresh ground black pepper and extra salt, if needed. Serve each portion of polenta with a sliced sausage and a sprinkle of extra Parmesan, if desired.

Makes about 4 servings.

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