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Polenta is cornmeal. Check the packages at your Italian deli and you will see different numbers which represent the coarseness or fineness of the grind.
Bigpan is right; polenta is coarsely milled cornmeal (the stuff used to make fluffy muffins and cornbread is often fine-grained). So it really depends on the application. If you don't mind a coarsely-textured baked good, polenta is fine. :)
For some applications, the polenta would need to be soaked 45 minutes or so, so that the product would not end up with undesirable crunchy sand in it. I do a cobbler with polenta batter topping, but if I don't soak the polenta in buttermilk 45 minutes, it is not palatable.
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