Thursday, October 4, 2012

Recipes from the Farm: Grilled Polenta with Sausages and Bell Peppers

Grilled Polenta with Sausages and Bell Peppers

For the polenta:
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 cup coarse ground polenta
1 cup whole milk
Butter for pan

For the sausages:
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 lb sweet Italian sausages, cut into slices 1/2 inch thick
1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chicken broth
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 Tblsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

To prepare the polenta, in a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, bring
3 cups water and the salt to a boil.  In a small bowl, stir together the cornmeal and milk.  Gradually stir the cornmeal mixture into the boiling water.  Stirring constantly, bring the mixture to a boil, about 2 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently, until the polenta is thick and creamy, about 25 minutes.  Add up to 1/2 water by tablespoons if the polenta begins to stick.  (Be careful, as the hot polenta can bubble and spatter.)

Butter a rimmed baking sheet or cake pane.  using a rubber spatula, spread the hot polenta on the prepared pan to form a 10-inch square about 1/2 inch thick.  Cover the polenta with waxes paper and refrigerate until cold, about 2 hours.  (Can be made and kept refrigerated up to 3 days ahead.)

To prepare the sausages, in a frying pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil.  Add the sausage slices and cook, stirring frequently, until browned on all sides. about 8 minutes.  Spoon off any excess fat.  Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes.  Add the bell peppers and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.  Add the broth and bring to a simmer, stirring to scrape up any browned bits from the pan bottom.  Season with salt and pepper.  Remove from the heat and keep warm.

preheat the broiler (grill).  Cut the polenta into 12 rectangles or squares, and brush the tops with half of the olive oil.  using a wide spatula, transfer the polenta pieces to a rimmed baking sheet, arranging them bottom side up.  Brush with the remaining oil.  Place in the broiler about 6 inches from the heat source.  Broil, turning once, until both sides are golden, about 5 minutes per side.

Arrange 2 pieces of polenta on each plate and surround with the sausage mixture, dividing it evenly.  sprinkle with the chopped parsley and serve at once.

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