Monday, December 13, 2010

Kale and Mushrooms with Creamy Polenta

1 1/4 lbs kale, stemmed, cut into 1-inch pieces

4 cups whole milk
3 1/2 cups water
2 cups polenta
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp ground black pepper

4 oz. pancetta (Italian bacon) or bacon, coarsely chopped
4 oz. mushrooms (such as crimini, oyster, and stemmed shitake), sliced
4tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 large yellow onion, minced
1 stalk celery
1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth
2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tbsp grated lemon peel

Cook kale in large pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 6 minutes. Drain.

Bring milk, water, polenta, salt, and pepper to boil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly. Reduce heat to low and simmer until thick, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, cook pancetta in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until golden brown, about 3 minutes. using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to paper towels. Add mushrooms, onions and 2 tbsp olive oil to drippings in skillet. Saute until mushrooms are tender, about 6 minutes. Stir in kale, celery and pancetta. add garlic and broth; simmer until broth is slightly reduced, about 6 minutes. Stir in thyme, lemon peel, an d 2 tbsp oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Whisk butter and Parmesan into polenta and divide among plates. Top with kale mixture.

Modified from a recipe found in Bon appetit Feb 2006 via

4tbsp unsalted butter
2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

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