It takes only 15 minutes of work and about 35 minutes of baking, and voilà! Out of the oven comes this distant cousin to baked polenta. It’s thin and savory -- crispy on the outside, yet fluffy on the inside. When you serve it with sliced fresh tomatoes or a bowl of arugula and a glass of red or cold IPA, you’ll have a wonderful rustic dinner that practically made itself. —QueenSashy
- Serves 4
3 1/2 cups
finely ground cornmeal
butter plus 1 tablespoon for greasing the baking dishes
4 to 6 ounces
aged Manchego, finely grated
eggs, lightly beaten
- Heat the milk and salt in a medium saucepan set over medium heat. When the milk starts to simmer, slowly sprinkle in the cornmeal, whisking constantly to prevent lumps from forming. Once all the cornmeal has been added, reduce the heat to medium-low. Continue to whisk for about 10 minutes, until the mixture becomes thick and velvety.
- Remove pan from the heat and stir in butter. Mix well. Once the butter is fully incorporated, add half of the cheese. When the cheese is fully incorporated, add the eggs. Mix well and set aside for about 30 minutes to let the cornmeal dough come to room temperature. Mix from time to time to prevent crust from forming.
- Preheat the oven to 400° F (200°C). Butter two 10-inch round pie dishes and divide the batter between the two dishes. Spread and flatten the dough with spatula -- the mixture should form very thin layer, about 1/4-inch thick, so work carefully. (You can also use any large baking dish with a flat bottom -- the cornmeal batter is quite thick and will hold its shape even on a large baking sheet.)
- Sprinkle the remaining half of the cheese on top. Place the baking dishes in the middle of the oven and bake until it is golden brown, slightly puffed and crisp around the edges, about 35 minutes.