Garlicky Greens with Microwave Polenta

March 23, 2015

Author Notes: Easy, fast, satisfying. Spice it up by adding a little hot pepper to your greens, make it richer by adding a dash of cream or milk (or even mascarpone!) to your polenta. And you really can microwave polenta! Read more at

Serves: 1


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2-3 bunches of any sturdy dark greens (kale, chard, mustard, etc).
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup polenta
  • shredded strong cheese, to taste
In This Recipe


  1. Make the greens: Heat the oil over medium heat in a deep sautee pan with a lid. Wash and chop the greens, removing any large stems, then put in the pan with any water still clinging to them. Put the lid on, then check after a few minutes and stir the greens down. The bottom layer will have started to collapse. Put the lid back on for a few more minutes, and check again. When the leaves have wilted, turn off the heat, and stir in the garlic.
  2. Make the polenta: Pour 1 cup water into a ceramic bowl, then add the polenta and a pinch of salt. Microwave on high for 2 1/2 minutes. Remove and stir, and drizzle in milk or cream, if using. Return to the microwave and cook an additional 2 1/2 minutes–or less, if your polenta is already quite thick at the halfway mark. Remember that polenta will thicken somewhat as it stands. And make sure to use an oven mitt when you take the polenta out of the microwave. It will be very hot.
  3. Pour the polenta into a serving bowl, and then sprinkle the shredded cheese on top. Then mound your greens on top, and serve.

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