All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2025

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

polenta cakes with rosemary and chives

Things are looking up here in New Hampshire - we actually had almost two days without rain! Today the rain is back with thunderstorms , but it has to stop sometime, right?
Yesterday I was experimenting with these cornmeal cakes, longing for the day when ( if?) my tomatoes are ripe. Can you imagine what a polenta cake with fresh diced tomatoes and basil would taste like? Add a nice green salad and some roasted or grilled chicken and it's a well rounded lunch or dinner. They are also perfect picnic fare, since they hold up well without having to pack in ice. Until the tomatoes are ready, I think I'll also try a green chile version - not only tasty, but pretty!
To make:
4 cups water
1 cup yellow or white cornmeal
salt and freshly cracked pepper
1/2 cup minced chives
2 T. chopped fresh rosemary
(1/2 cup or so parmesan cheese, grated, optional) If you decide to add the cheese, hold off on the salt)
Oil several ramekins or souffle dishes with canola or olive oil. If you prefer, you can oil an 8x8 inch cake pan and cut the cakes out with a glass or cookie cutter once cooled.
Bring 3 cups of water to a boil.
Mix the one cup of cornmeal into one cup cold water and mix briskly with a fork.
When the water comes to a boil, pour the water and cornmeal into the boiling water.
Stir, then whisk until the cornmeal is thick and blops as it cooks.
Take off heat and stir in the herbs, salt and pepper, and parmesan if desired.
Spoon into the ramekins or scrape into the cake pan.
Let cool at least 1/2 hour.
Unmold the ramekins by turning upside down - the cakes should pop right out.
If using the cake pan, cut out circles with a cookie cutter.
Serve at room temperature.
PS/ Izzie the 3 year old liked the few plain polenta cakes I'd made - just in case. So if you're serving company that includes very small ones, make a few plain ones for them. ( She also tried to dip them in the coconut cream dip for the strawberries:)


lisaiscooking said...

These look delicious with the rosemary and chives, and they'll be incredible with fresh tomatoes! I'll gladly take some of your rain.

katrina said...

Glad you enjoyed, lisa! This rain has just gone on too long - over a mont with only a few hours here and there with a little sun. I hate to complain, but it's stunted the garden plants, contributed to an explosion of damp-loving ants, and caused painful sinus conditions in an awful lot of people. I love rain, but this is ridiculous! By the way - I loved your kabobs on your blog!

katrina said...

Oops! that should read "a month" of rain!

La Table De Nana said...

Pretty as a picture:)

And BTW..I have never seen such a rainy period as recently here in QC.. enough to live under an umbrella~:(

Chef Fresco said...

These polenta cakes are beautiful! Look so tasty!

Barb said...

Hi Katrina - I's been a while since I've been around (and I've had a lot of catching up on your site to read, too!!) & as always, everything looks so delicious!! I will admit that I don't believe I've ever had polenta though - I guess I should give it a try sometime.

Sorry about all of the rain in your area (& all of the northeast). When I watch the weather and hear about all of the rain there, I do think about you and wonder how you are all getting on.

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Ahhh, I've found you again! Hi, Kat. So lovely to see your combination of mouth watering photos and recipes! I can't wait to scroll through your articles and will be checking these often!

katrina said...

Nana - thank you! I am feeling like a mushroom these days - dark, dank, and waterlogged. Soon, I hope we will both see the sun!

katrina said...

Thank you Michael and Jessi! One of those recipes that is fun to play around with - tastes and textures and color! Delighted you enjoyed!

katrina said...

Nice to see you, Barb! We are all fed up with the rain and chilly weather, I think! It's nice to know you're thinking of us poor waterlogged and mildewed folks! Polenta is an awesome dish - just think of it as cooked cornmeal, perfect for the times you might wish for mashed potatoes. Quick, easy, and delish! How's your "Summer" going?

katrina said...

So good to hear from you, Aaron! I'm so happy about your summer off and think of you finally enjoying yourself without too much stress! Also hope a job quietly shows itself! Enjoy that beautiful garden, and of course, the kids........

Jennifer said...

Those herbs fell perfectly into place! These cakes are gorgeous and inviting.

I too am tired of the rain. My poor little garden is waterlogged.

katrina said...

Thanks, Jennifer! Loved making these and keep thinking up new ideas for the next batch. I think (but am not sure, since I can't remember) I droped a few rosemary springs in the bottom of the ramekins before filling 2 inches with polenta. I would definitely do that with an herb like dill - not so important with tomato and chile or snipped basil.

Anonymous said...

I am always looking for new treats for my gluten free hubby. This is one. Thanks for making our lives easier.

katrina said...

Delighted to help, comfycook - thanks for reminding me to tag this and other posts for gluten-free!

Mark said...

excellent! these look wonderful and just what i was looking for to serve with beef bourguignon this weekend.

about how many cakes does this recipe yield?

thanks so much!

katrina said...

Mark, I seem to remember it made ten cakes, but of course it will depend on the cookie cutter or ramekins you use. Sounds like a marvelous side to your beef bourg!