Polenta, or cornmeal cooked in milk or water, is to be found in the northern Italian regions of Lombardy, Piedmont, the Trentino, and Riuli-Venezia-Giulia.
Polenta requires constant vigorous stirring to achieve its characteristic smooth consistency. Be strong! It's a great workout
SERVES 8 TO 10
4 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups coarsely ground cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
In a large heavy pot, bring the water to a boil. Add the salt. Add the cornmeal in a thin stream, stirring vigorously all the while with a wooden spoon. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium heat until the mixture thickens and begins to leave the side of the pan, about 15 to 25 minutes, depending on the coarseness of the cornmeal.
Immediately pour the polenta onto a lightly oiled wooden board or platter. Let it cool for 15 minutes, and then cut into slices.
Serve in place of bread, noodles, or lasagna.
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