Saturday, November 12, 2005

Passionate About Polenta

I am a relative newcomer to cooking polenta but I have decided to start experimenting with it. Truthfully, I am fascinated by the laborious cooking process devoted to such lowly ingredients. It is similar to making pasta by hand... lots of hard work for something that you could easily dump out of a bag from the grocery store... but then, where is the adventure in that?
I have tried three or four different kinds of polenta with mixed results and I have to say the best outcome, in my opinion was the bio-polenta from the Swiss grocery store called Coop. There was also an interesting and successful version of mixed-grain polenta from the Valtellina called "Il Saraceno Polenta Taragna" that I made in Italy last month. (pictured above)
I am so comitted to making a good polenta that I have even acquired a heavy copper polenta pot with its own wooden spoon especially designed for the task. I have only used them twice but I can say that I really enjoy doing it in this traditional way.
I find that when I work hard (a good polenta takes 40 minutes of continuous stirring) and pay so much attention to the cooking process, the anticipation seems to add something special to the final product which makes me savor it even more.


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