Italian-style polenta -- ground yellow cornmeal boiled here with water -- can be used as a bed for roasted or stewed vegetables or meats, or served on its own with good cheese and a salad. You can substitute milk if you'd like an even creamier result and can adapt the recipe by stirring in grated cheese or herbs to the cooked polenta.
3 cups water
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup coarsely ground yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon olive oil
prep: 5 minutes
total: 30 minutes
1. In a medium saucepan, bring the water and the sea salt to a boil over high heat.
2. While constantly whisking with one hand, slowly shake in the cornmeal in a thin stream with the other. Lower the heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until the polenta thickens, about 15-30 minutes, depending on the coarseness of the grind. (Scrape the bottom and sides while cooking to prevent the polenta from sticking.)
3. Stir in the olive oil, then pour the polenta into a bowl. Let it rest for 5 minutes or so before serving.