This is a dish that I have invented myself, inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi's book "Plenty".
100g Polenta meal
Cavolo Nero - a "slack handful" (approx one cupful once prepared?) - leaves stripped from stalks and lightly cooked beforehand (I used a whole small head, as per picture above)
Half a medium red onion, fried until crisp
30g walnuts, toasted in walnut oil or similar (you could also use pine-nuts or almonds)
25g Parmesan cheese, grated
4 small Spring Onions, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste (I find that polenta needs a lot of salt)
- Heat the (salted) water in a pan, to boiling point
- Stir in the polenta very slowly, using a wooden spoon
- Once the polenta is blended-in, add the butter and parmesan cheese
- Cook over a low heat for approx 5 minutes, stirring constantly to keep it smooth
- If required, add a little more water to stop it going too gloopy. Ottolenghi says that the consistency of the polenta needs to be "like thick porridge". The same consistency as mashed potato maybe?
- Stir in the cooked Cavolo Nero and fried onion, aiming to distribute them evenly throughout the polenta
- When the polenta is ready, transfer it to to individual plates or bowls
- Garnish with the toasted walnut, broken into convenient pieces, and the Spring Onions
I served mine with toasted home-made bread, with garlic butter (and a bottle of Argentinian Sauvignon Blanc).
If I had had any I would also have served some crunchy Romaine lettuce as a side dish...
OK, finally a little admission: there were some lumps in the polenta, despite my efforts to prevent this. Who knows how to avoid this? Can you please advise...?
[For more on growing and cooking Cavolo Nero, please see my post of 26 September 2010, and for some "arty" photos have a look at my post called Surface tension on 27 January 2011.]
This is a P.S. just to include a mention of Appalachian Feet, where you will find links to lots more lovely blogs! Thanks to Eliza for hosting this blogpost in another amazing issue of How To Find Great Plants.