Archive for April 2012

Crispy Savory Polenta with Tomato Wine Sauce   1 comment

Polenta is one of the most famous staple dishes of northern Italian cuisine. It is essentially coarsely or finely ground yellow or white cornmeal (ground maize) cooked by boiling to a paste in stock water. It is usually eaten as is in its mush form (like porridge) but can be innovated with grilling, baking or frying to make interesting and super tasty dishes topped with tangy sauces like the one in this dish.

I had been thinking about making polenta for quite some time now and finally got myself to work on it today. It is kind of a physical exercise when you make the dish and whisking & stirring the thick mush for minutes is sure to give you toned muscles in arms 🙂 But afterall the effort is well paid and not only does this look highly appetizing and beautiful but is extremely tasty as well. It is also good enough for a party main-course, which I tried with few colleagues whom I invited for dinner served with some Chenin Blanc and it sure did receive some good reviews!

-:Ingredients:-

3 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 cup Vegetable Stock/Broth
1 cup Milk
½ cup White Wine (Chenin Blanc)
1 cup coarsly ground cornmeal (Maize Rawa)
¼ cup grated Cheddar Cheese (or Parmesan/Blue Cheese)
1 tsp freshly chopped Basil (or ½ tsp Dried Basil)
1 tsp freshly chopped Marjoram (Marua leaves; or ½ tsp Dried Oregano)
1 tsp dried Italian Seasoning
½ tsp Pepper
½ tsp Chilli Powder
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Tomato Ketchup
3 tsp Butter
Salt to taste
Olive Oil for frying
—————————–
4-5 cloves Garlic (minced)
1 medium Onion (finely chopped)
2 large Tomatos (finely chopped)
¼ medium Capsicum (finely chopped)
4 pitted Green Olives (thinly sliced)

-: Recipe :-

  1. Heat 2 Tbsp Olive Oil in a non-stick pan. Saute Onion till it gets translucent for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add half of minced garlic and after few seconds add Capcisum and saute for another minute. Stir in the Italian Seasoning and mix it well.
  3. Slowly pour in the Vegetable Stock and Milk and bring to boil while whisking regularly.
  4. Gradually add the cornmeal while continuously whisking. Continue stirring for about 15 minutes until the polenta gets thick (add ½ cup water in between if it gets very thick).
  5. Add ¼ tsp each Pepper & Chilli Powder and stir in the grated cheese. Add salt according to taste and mix well.
  6. Pour the polenta mixture in a buttered deep dish and keep it in refrigerator for around 2 hours until it gets cooled and set.
  7. Meanwhile in another non-stick pan, add 1 Tbsp Olive Oil and saute the remaining Garlic for few seconds.
  8. Add Basil, Marjoram and Tomato and cook for 2-3 minutes till water seperates out. Add Green Olives and mix well.
  9. Slowly whisk in the wine & butter and let it heat while stirring regularly till the sauce gets reduced and thick (Add ½ cup water in between when the sauce gets too thick).
  10. Add salt, sugar, ¼ tsp each of pepper & chilli powder and tomato ketchup and mix well.
  11. Keep the sauce aside and when the polenta is cooled, take it out of the refrigerator.
  12. Cut the polenta cake into triangular pieces and fry on both sides till golden and crispy.
  13. Arrange the crispy polenta pieces on a platter and pour the heated tomato wine sauce over the top.
  14. Top it with some Parmesan filings and Enjoy the Ultimate Experience 🙂

-: Tips :-

  • To easily peel off tomatoes and boil them quickly, first heat water to boiling levels. Take tomatoes and slit them in a cross hair fashion for about 1-2 cms from the bottom and add to the boiling water. Take out after about 12-15 secs and wash with cold water. Peel off and chop it accordingly.
  • Substitute Salt with Rock Salt for a more zangy taste as well as a healthier alternative.
  • Enjoy the dish with the remaining White Wine. Chenin Blanc is a good choice for the same as it is semi-dry with a fruity flavour which suits the dish well.
  • The Polenta can also be brushed with olive oil and grilled appropriately if someone does not prefer to fry the same.

-: Pictures :-

Crispy Savory PolentaCrispy Savory Polenta with Tomato Wine Sauce

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Posted April 30, 2012 by Rahul in Italian, Recipes

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Omeletto Italiano   1 comment

A new style of Omelette infused with Italian flavors and made pronto in a Microwave, can make a Sunday Breakfast hearty and enjoyable at the same time. I tried this as an experiment on a Sunday Morning and it came out amazingly well with a great texture and beautiful colors! This style can be used with regular Omelettes as well as it makes them fluffy & delicious and keeps it soft & non-fried on the face.

-:Ingredients:-

1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp Pizza Sauce
1 Tbsp Milk
1 Tbsp Cheddar Cheese (shredded)
1 tsp Dried Italian Seasoning
1 tsp freshly chopped Coriander (or Parsley)
½ tsp Chilli Powder
¼ tsp Pepper
¼ tsp Sugar
Salt to taste
—————————–
2 Eggs
½ medium Onion (finely chopped)
1 small Tomato (finely chopped)
¼ medium Capsicum (finely chopped)
½ tsp Green Chillies (finely chopped)
2 slices Wheet/Multi-Grain/Semolina Bread

-: Recipe :-

  1. Break the eggs in a bowl and beat it for atleast 2 minutes to have a flully Omeletto.
  2. Add Milk, Salt, Pepper, Sugar, Chilli Powder & Dried Italian Seasoning and beat to mix it well.
  3. Add Pizza Sauce and Cheese and mix well.
  4. Add Onion, Tomato, Capcisum, Chillies and Coriander and mix well.
  5. Rub the sides of a microwave safe dish properly with Olive Oil and pour the mixture in it slowly. Ensure that the mixture is set evenly.
  6. Microwave on High power for around 1.5 to 2 minutes. Take it out and check if the Omeletto looks dry and done, else microwave for some more time, till its complete.
  7. In a nonstick pan, put a few drops of olive oil, and keep it on high heat.
  8. Take the Omeletto out and brown it for few seconds on the Non-Stick pan on the side which was face down in Microwave.
  9. Toast Bread Slices and serve the Omlletto with Tomato Ketchup.
  10. Enjoy the Ultimate Experience 🙂

-: Tips :-

  • Substitute Salt with Rock Salt for a more zangy taste as well as a healthier alternative.
  • Cheddar cheese is recommended for the distinctive aroma and flavour it imparts as well as the ease with which it melts and mingles with rest of the ingrediants!
  • Microwave is recommended so that the Omeletto retains a fluffy texture on the face and does not get fried like in traditional methods.

-: Pictures :-

Omeletto Italiano

Posted April 24, 2012 by Rahul in Italian, Recipes

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