Cast Iron

Saffron Polenta with Sausage and Corn

November 21, 2011
0 Ratings
  • Serves 6 to 8
Author Notes

Today was a very unusual (for us here in Southern California), cold and rainy day. The pounding of the rain woke me up early and I decided to spoil a little my husband with a hearty hot breakfast, and cook a dish which he loves. Since I am used to cook a large portion and most of the time, take to our daughters’ to enjoy together, I made a pretty large one. I added sweet kernels of corn to add texture and instead of serving the sausages separately, browned them slowly, and used the rendered fat for sautéing onion, and then mixed them in into polenta. I served my husband the middle and the rest used for photos and leftovers. Inspired by Bon Appetite’s “Golden Corn and Saffron Polenta” recipe with my addition of sausage and cheese. —Kukla

What You'll Need
  • • 3-4 Italian Sweet Chicken sausages, casing removed
  • • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • • 5 cups homemade or prepared low-sodium chicken broth
  • • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
  • • 1 cup medium-grain polenta or (coarse cornmeal; such as Alpina Savoie)
  • • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • • 1/2 cup Swiss cheese, shredded + 1/2 Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  1. Heat a 3 or 4-quart heavy bottom or cast-iron Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add sausages, break them up with a wooden spoon in bite-size pieces, cover and cook for about 15 minutes turning ones, until golden brown. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate.
  2. Add onion; cover and cook 5 minutes until softened. Add broth, 1teaspoon coarse salt, and saffron; bring to boil. Whisk in polenta. Cook, whisking constantly, until polenta boils and starts to thicken, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to lowest heat possible.
  3. Switch to a wooden spoon. Simmer about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover and let it cook for 20 minutes; then uncover and simmer until polenta is cooked through and thick, stirring with the wooden spoon, about 10 minutes longer.
  4. Mix in the corn and sausage; then when everything is combined and warmed thru, turn of the heat and stir in cheeses.
  5. Cover and let it stand on the stove for a few more minutes; then invert to a serving plate, sprinkle with the Parmigiano Reggiano and it is ready to be served. I like to fry an egg or even better melt butter and infuse it with freshly grated clove of garlic (you can fry eggs or melt butter while the polenta is steel in the pot).
  6. Polenta can be made 2 hours ahead and then rewarmed in the oven or over low heat on the stove just before serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Emilia Rosa
    Emilia Rosa
  • boulangere
  • Sagegreen
  • loubaby
  • Kukla

13 Reviews

Emilia R. August 20, 2013
I just realized it--and maybe it's just my server?--but the list of ingredients has no measurements/weights...
Emilia R. August 20, 2013
This looks and sounds absolutely wonderful! I used to make polenta all the time (lots of Italians in south of Brazil) and keep it in the refrigerator for days. Do you think your version will keep long in the frige?
Kukla August 20, 2013
Thank You MrsK for the nice comment! And yes, you can keep this polenta for a week in the refrigerator and for a month in the freezer. Enjoy!
Kukla August 20, 2013
I emailed you the full recipe
Emilia R. August 20, 2013
Thank you so much! It was so kind of you to send me the recipe! I just see the ingredients--like teaspoon, tablespoon, cup, etc--but no numbers... I think Explorer might be the problem. Sorry for the trouble.
ChefFace March 5, 2013
yummm.. I know what I'm making for sunday breakfast! Looks delicious!
Kukla March 6, 2013
Thank you ChefFace!
boulangere May 30, 2012
Beautiful! I love it!
Kukla May 30, 2012
Thank you boulangere!
Sagegreen November 21, 2011
I love the egg on top, too!
Kukla November 21, 2011
Thank you Sagegreen! Since I cooked the polenta not as a side dish but for breakfast, I thought an egg will be an appropriate addition for the sausages.
loubaby November 21, 2011
This may sound silly, but this looks so cute....I just want to hug it and eat it....
Kukla November 21, 2011
Thank you loubaby! I am the one who is being silly trying to replicate sun, which was missing in the sky on a rainy and gloomy day.