Polenta is a type of maize porridge made from ground yellow or white cornmeal (ground maize). The coarseness of the grind can vary depending on the dish and the region. Grits, for instance, which are popular in the Southern USA are made from a more coarsely ground corn meal.
Originally polenta was a rather bland peasant food, a type of corn mush, commonly eaten since Roman times. But recently polenta has been popularized in more exciting and tasty recipes which make use of fried or grilled polenta combined with cheeses and tomato sauces.
3 cups instant polenta (G.M.O. free)
8 cups water
2 T olive oil
In a large pot add the water, a generous amount of salt and olive oil. Bring to a boil and let the water boil for a couple of minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat and quickly pour in all the polenta, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon.
Put the pot back on the stove and cook for 5-6 minutes on medium-high heat, stirring constantly.
Turn the heat off and let sit for 1 minute. Your polenta is now ready for use, or eating.
For a softer or firmer polenta add more or less water.
Corn is such a delicious and versatile wheat-free grain alternative that you might be tempted to rely on it as a staple food. Unfortunately, too much reliance on corn as a staple can cause a vitamin deficiency disease called Pellagra.
Corn is a poor source of niacin (vitamin B3) and tryptophan which can cause your body to become deficient in these two essential nutrients if you don't have a balanced diet. Take care to balance your corn intake with proteins a variety of sources, such as beans, and make sure you have an otherwise balance and varied diet.