Tuesday, May 3, 2011

No-Stir Polenta

Polenta is great, peasant-style food that is made with simple ingredients. However, making it can be a chore, as it involves a lot of stirring, as well as a high risk for splatter burns. It is normally made by consistently stirring ingredients over a hot stove top.

What if I told you that there was a way to make the polenta without all the stirring? Well, read on, as this recipe is genius!

To begin, you will need 1 cup of medium-ground, yellow cornmeal.

In a pot, pour in 5 cups of cold water.

Here comes the secret ingredient...Baking soda! Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is a very common ingredient found in most kitchens. It can be used for everything from baking cakes to cleaning. It also has a lesser-known property of breaking down foods.

For this recipe, you will only need a pinch. (It goes a long way!)

Add the cornmeal and the baking soda to the cold water. Salt can also be added at this time. (I used approximately half a teaspoon.)

Bring the liquid to a boil and then place a lid on top of the pot. You want to leave the lid slightly ajar to allow for some steam to escape. After coming to a boil, turn the heat down to a low setting (enough for the mixture to have a steady simmer). Leave the pot on the hot stove for 25 minutes. After the 25 minutes, remove the pot from the element and let the mixture stand for another 10 minutes.

Once you remove the lid, the polenta will look something like this.

Pour in approximately 1 to 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Using olive oil at this point will provide better flavour and nutrition to the dish.

Give the mixture a quick whirl. Be sure to pick up any stiffer bits from the bottom and mix them in well.

Transfer the polenta to a serving dish and it will be ready to eat!

In this form, the polenta will be creamy. If you leave it out or in the fridge it will solidify and get a different texture for use.

Polenta is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner. My absolute favourite way to have it is with a dash of ground cinnamon and a drizzle of honey for a healthy and yummy morning meal.


  1. Christina PironMay 3, 2011 at 9:01 PM

    I absolutely love polenta. I will have to try this one.

  2. Christina, Let me know what you have it with.

  3. Hi Asif: Jen and Mike are staying with me and Mike loves polenta. I must try this (today) after i go to the store and pick up some cornmeal. Will let you know how it works out. Thanks for this. Zia