Really crispy, really gooey polenta

My favorite restaurant, Nopa, has a brunch dish of fried eggs with the best fried polenta I've ever had. It's so crispy on the outside, and so gooey on the inside. When I fry up leftover polenta, it's nowhere near as crispy or as gooey - just lacklusterly in between. Any ideas what the secret is?

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a Whole Foods Market Customer

Try to cook out your polenta and pour it into a pan to chill when it is still fairly loose. I like to simmer mine on the stove for about 30 minutes and then transfer it to a double boiler to cook out for another hour or so- the result is super fluffy and light. Before you turn it out, hit it with a couple of table spoons of butter and a generous handful of grated Fontina cheese, stir, then let it chill and set. Cut the chilled polenta into wedges and dust in a little flour or cornstarch and pan fry. Hopefully you get the crispy-gooey combination that Lawrence does at Nopa.

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klfnwf
klfnwf March 8, 2012

Hot pan to crisp it & add cheese to make it
Gooier

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vvvanessa
vvvanessa March 9, 2012

I agree that the polenta probably has to be fairly loose when it gets cooled down, and I'd also say that whatever amount of cheese and butter or olive oil you use should be more than what seems reasonable. (Having worked in restaurant kitchens, it still always blows my mind how much more fat restaurants put in their food than I would at home.) Is it possible that they're deep frying the polenta?

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