To learn the whole story on this revolutionary method of cooking Oven-baked Polenta, go here.
If you just want the recipe, you’re in the right place.
spray oil, or butter, vegan butter, or olive oil, for greasing pan (plus optional addition later)
4 to 5 1/2 cups water (less water gives you a thicker finished polenta, more a thinner; your call)
1 1/2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons fine salt, preferably sea salt, or to taste
1 cup cornmeal, stone-ground much preferred, coarse or fine
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Oil or grease a sturdy ovenproof baking dish — glass, ceramic, cast-iron, enamel, it doesn’t matter — with a 3 quart capacity.
3. Add all the ingredients (except optional fat) and stir well. The mixture will separate, the cornmeal sinking to the bottom. Don’t worry. Just put the pan in the oven, uncovered, and forget about it. Don’t give it a second thought until 40 minutes are up.
4. At this point, carefully remove from the oven and stir well. Then return the pan to the oven and bake 10 minutes longer.
5. Remove the pan from the oven and let it sit at room temp for 5 minutes. Serve the polenta as is, as an undergirding for almost any kind of savory stew or set a poached or fried egg, maybe with some steamed or sauteed garlicky spinach, on it. Or amend it with a splash of cream, some sauteed mushrooms or onions, a handful of grated cheese, more butter or vegan butter or olive oil.
Serves 4 as a substantial accompaniment.
PS: Refrigerate any leftovers, which will set-up (thicken). Then, tomorrow, lucky you: slice the leftover polenta, brown it in a little oil, and enjoy it all over again.
The photograph above, courtesy of Camellia Beans (they did a story with three of my recipes included, some time back) is of my Southern-Style Ragout of Butter Beans & Greens, over a nice helping of oven-baked grits.