Grilled Polenta

Cut the polenta squares smaller and you have a bite sized appetizer

I love how versatile leftover polenta can be. Aside from grilling, it can be baked with meat, cheese and sauce; pan fried or eaten plain hot or cold. Depending on how big the slices are it can become either a main, side or appetizer as well. The topping I came up with is very simple and many other greens can be substituted for the arugula. Other melting cheeses work well also.

Grilled Polenta with Arugula and Mozerella

  • 6 1/2″ thick slices polenta
  • 1 cup arugula chopped roughly
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 pieces pancetta diced
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 6 large slices fresh mozzarella
  • salt/pepper

Grill polenta over a fire until dark yellow and hot flipping every five minutes, about 10 minutes total. Meanwhile fry pancetta in butter. When browned, add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add arugula and wilt. Add wine, deglaze pan and cook until evaporated. Spoon arugula equally over polenta slices, top with cheese and bake in oven until cheese melts. You can also use the grill, just keep it away from the direct heat.

About Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

This blog attempts to collect some of the things I try to create with food and booze. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail. My hope is to entertain and maybe help people think a little harder about what they decide to eat and drink.
This entry was posted in Dinner, Food, Grilling/Smoking, Recipes, Sides and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

55 Responses to Grilled Polenta

  1. Abby says:

    Wow, this looks and sounds fabulous. Love polenta. I’ve come across several recipes in the last few days that call for pancetta, which I’ve never used before. (I know, sad.) This recipe is the clincher…I’m getting some pancetta this weekend. Can’t wait to try this!

  2. ChefMom says:

    This looks good and sounds good. I just have a hard time with polenta. I always want to like it, order something that comes with polenta because I think I’m going to like it and it still hasn’t worked for me. Maybe I just haven’t had it prepared the right way yet, or maybe it’s a texture thing. Still…it looks good and I do want to like it. πŸ˜‰

  3. Kas says:

    That sounds delicious. I love polenta and mozzarella is one of my favorite cheeses. And I now have a long list of your recipes that I need to try … πŸ™‚

  4. JamieAnne says:

    Lovely! I’ve been thinking about polenta this week. Thanks for the great post.

  5. rsmacaalay says:

    Polenta was just recently introduced to me in a Brazilian Restaurant, at first I thought it would be nothing special but when I tried the deep fried with parmesan cheese, it was wow! A humble dish with great texture and flavour. So since then I told myself to try different types of polenta dishes, so this will be on my list soon

  6. Caroline says:

    I’ve actually never tried to make polenta, but this makes me want to give it a shot. Sounds like a great flavor combo, as always.

  7. myblogject says:

    I take it this uses the block type polenta. Looks very good. I’ve only used the loose variety to batter fish…

  8. Laura says:

    Oh Rufus you are KILLING ME!!! Polenta + pancetta+ wine?!?!? Gonna have to make this tomorrow, will report back…

  9. I’m like Caroline ..never tried to make it but I want to..and the combination of toppings you used is really good

  10. I adore polenta and really miss my late godmothers one 😦 hers was wonderful πŸ™‚ I think I prefer left over polenta to fresh but have always had it with tomato sauce, so this sounds lovely. Just have to wait for the arugula to sprout….!

  11. I adore polenta and have never even had it as delicious looking as this! Will definitely be making htis soon!

  12. gisellecagli says:

    Yummy!! I love polenta! It is such a hearty dish. It is a typical dish of the Northern Regions of Italy, and it is usually eaten during winter. As you said, it is very versatile. In Lombardy polenta substitutes pasta, and they pair it with endless sauces: with pork ribs and tomato sauce, cheese (try melted gorgonzola!), radicchio, etc.

  13. I’m not a huge fan of polenta but that looks good!!

  14. I love polenta and usually fry it in butter but boy oh boy, you have taken it to a whole new level of wonderful.
    πŸ™‚ Mandy

  15. jenlenew says:

    Mmm this looks incredible! I’ve always wanted to try grilling polenta

  16. I am impressed, this certainly looks a tasty snack to enjoy.

  17. nrhatch says:

    Love polenta . . . and grits!

    Seasons 52 serves/served a vegetarian platter with fried polenta and grilled asparagus. Yummy! Looks like they are serving it with tabbouleh at the moment:

    Click to access Dinner_Menu_Spring_2011.pdf

  18. ChgoJohn says:

    We’ve made polenta every way you’ve described, even layered it and baked it like a lasagna, but never thought to grill it. Genius! Thanks for the tip. Cannot wait to try it.

  19. Charles says:

    Haven’t tried Polenta in years – had a bad experience when my mother used to try and shove it on to me every other mealtime as a kid πŸ˜€ Perhaps it’s time to give it another shot?!

    • Ha, ha. Do you have kids? Force it on them and ruin another generation! Kidding. My wife overdosed on beets as a child and still can’t stomach the taste.

      • Charles says:

        Haha, no – no kids yet, although when I do I’m going to make damn sure they grow up with the same love of food that I have. None of this “fast food generation” round my place!

  20. TasteFood says:

    I must confess that I am not a huge fan of polenta – and I would really like to have my opinion changed. This recipe might do the trick!

  21. I am not a huge polenta person.. maybe because I am such a huge grit person lol. But your recipe actually sounds delicious. You’re recipes always do πŸ™‚

  22. joshuafagans says:

    Fantastic. Hard to decide if polenta is better the first time you cook it or the second. This combo sounds delicious!

  23. SimpleP says:

    Looks fabulous. Great way to use arugula other than in salad. Keep ’em coming!

  24. I’ve never actually grilled my own polenta. I’ll have to give it a try, especially with that mozzarella!

  25. Yum. So simple and so delicious. I never cook polenta because….no idea actually. Will get some this week and change that.

  26. spicegirlfla says:

    Mmmm… Tho I have grilled romaine, I had never thought to saute or bake argula, what a great topping idea. Polenta is a favorite of mine, so versatile. I will definitely have to try this out!!

  27. This looks like a wonderful way to make polenta. Will have to try it, too.

  28. Love the addition of the arugula, Rufus! Cheese and polenta are great together. The chefs I cooked with last week made polenta with a folded in onion cream, which was just a new mind-blowing combination.

  29. Grilled polenta is fantastic. You are making me dream of a nice grilled portabella with olive oil and a little balsamic on top of that bad boy slice of grilled polenta. Sounds so good.

  30. egg me on says:

    This sounds great. I was looking for something out-of-the-ordindary to do with polenta, so thanks!

  31. Mmmm…that looks tasty!

  32. Kiki says:

    Oh great – I just happen to have some polenta left over from a dessert and was wondering what to do with it, almost chucked it in the bin but hesitated. Glad I didn’t bin it now and that I stopped by your blog.

  33. All my favorite ingredients in one scrumptious dish! I can never get enough of grilled polenta. πŸ™‚

  34. I’m making an anniversary dinner for my husband and I this weekend, and this just might have to be on the menu!

  35. nancyc says:

    I’ve never had grilled polenta before, but this sounds fantastic!

  36. Your grilled polenta looks awesome! Cookin’ Canuck and I would love if you linked up this recipe & any 2 other side dishes in this weeks Get Grillin’ event posted on both of our blogs.

  37. wee eats says:

    I’ve only had polenta in its creamy form (full of cream and cheese), I’m too afraid to make it in the “patty” form – how is the texture ???

  38. I always make this! Well, a version of it. Mine is topped with mascarpone cheese and a wild mushroom sauce. I’ll have to post it soon!!

  39. Making mini crab cakes served on grilled polenta and topped with some microgreens for an dinner party this weekend! I will post some pictures and share!

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