Parmesan Fried Polenta Cakes
Serves 4 Active Time 15 min. Total Time 35 min.
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 bay leaf
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 cup polenta
3 tablespoons butter, divided
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1. In a saucepan combine the milk, water, salt, bay leaf and cayenne. Bring mixture to a boil. Whisk in polenta and cook for 25-30 minutes until very thick, stirring frequently. Taste test the polenta at this time it should feel smooth on your tongue.
2. Remove from heat and stir in 1 tablespoon butter and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
3. Line a 7 by 7-inch square pan with plastic wrap. Pour the polenta into the prepared pan. Cover the top with more plastic smoothed onto the surface of the polenta. Chill in the refrigerator until needed (at least 1.5 hours).
4. When ready to use, remove the polenta from the pan and cut into desired shapes.
5. Coat a nonstick saute pan with olive oil and add 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot and starting to smoke (just a little), add the polenta shapes. Cook the polenta on both sides (about 4-5 minutes on each side) until a golden crust has formed. Flip the polenta shapes and sprinkle 3 tablespoons of Parmesan over polenta.