Mike Lepizerra's Polenta

January 23, 2014
Author Notes

"Mike Lepizerra is the chef of Mike’s Kitchen, an Italian ’restaurant’ at the VFW in Cranston, RI. The chefs at Al Forno dine there often; Mike generously allowed them to include this in their repertoire and book. This is going to blow your mind."
this quote taken from web:
[This was an experiment in cutting and pasting a Word document into a 52 Recipe Instructions box. But it did not work. will fix the format of this recipe when i can. sorry.] —LeBec Fin

  • Makes 4-5 cups
  • 1/4 cup virgin olive oil
In This Recipe
  1. Ingredients 1/4 cup virgin olive oil 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter (can cut down to 1 stick, 4 ounces.) 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons chopped garlic 2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade [optional: can use part or all of any stock, including mushroom] 1 1/2 quarts half-and-half (yes!) 2 1/2 cup water 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt 12 turns of a pepper grinder 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 2 cups cornmeal [Anson Mills preferred] pinch sugar 1 1/2 to 2 cups freshly grated high quality pecorino romano [ optional sliced and sauteed shiitakes or other mushroms]
  2. directions 1. Heat the oil and butter in a large, heavy stockpot. Add the garlic and saute over low heat until it is golden. 2. Add the stock, half-and-half, 2 1/2 cups of water, salt and black and red peppers, and stir to combine. Raise the heat and bring to a boil. 3.. Very slowly, add the cornmeal, stirring constantly. Lower the heat to maintain a gentle boil. After all the cornmeal has been added,[optional:add mushrooms now] continue to stir until it is thick and creamy,[and spoon can stand up straight in it] about 20 minutes. 4. Off the heat, stir in the sugar and Romano. Serve right away with any sauce or side of your choosing. I like it with braised short ribs, roast chicken or a killer red sauce.[ If you want to serve it with a rich dish, like osso bucco, use less butter and cream and more stock or water.] notes: I prefer stoneground cornmeal from traditional mills like Anson in South Carolina or Gray's in Rhode Island. Source: Cucina Simpatica ]

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My eating passions are Japanese, Indian, Mexican; with Italian and French following close behind. Turkish/Arabic/Mediterranean cuisines are my latest culinary fascination. My desert island ABCs are actually 4 Cs: citrus, cumin, cilantro, cardamom, and GARLIC! I am so excited by the level of sophistication that I see on Food52 and hope to contribute recipes that will inspire you like yours do me. I would like to ask a favor of all who do try a recipe of mine > Would you plse review it and tell me truthfully how it worked for you and/or how you think it would be better? I know many times we feel that we don't want to hurt someone's feelings, but. i really do want your honest feedback because it can only help me improve the recipe.Thanks so much.