The crispy deliciousness of polenta fries will make you quickly forget about your potato French fries of the past, seriously!! And they´re so easy to make, no deep-frying necessary either!
Just cook up about one and a half cup of polenta flour in three times the amount of water (for 2-3 people), adding a generous pinch of salt or more. There are different ways to make polenta – you can first bring water to boil and then slowly add the cornmeal while constantly stirring OR – what I do – leave the cornmeal soaking overnight in the designated amount of water, next day add salt, cover and bring to boil on a medium flame, then cook for at least half an hour on the lowest flame and on a flame tamer. I don´t even stir my polenta and it comes out quite perfect (I think). Anyway…when your polenta is cooked and it has the right (quite thick yet still creamy!) consistency, stir in fresh or dried rosemary and fresh or dried sage, both finely chopped. Also stir in 2 or 3 tbsp of oil of your choice. Spread in an even layer about 1,5-2 cm thick onto a baking tray or similar pan. Allow to cool down and leave it for a few hours either in the fridge or in a cool spot so it can become more stiff. Then you can cut the mass into “fries”, using a sharp knife. Transfer the fries into a baking tray (I found it unnecessary to be oiling the tray, the polenta was oily enough) and bake them for 45 minutes on 220°C, flipping them halfway so they get crispy and golden brown on both sides. Enjoy with a fresh salad!
I love it how the cold weather gives us a chance to make thick stew-like vegetable soups, very warming! And I like how green this soup looks 😀
half a medium broccoli head, cut into florets
1 medium onion, diced
half a portobello mushroom, cubed
about 3/4 cup cubed hokkaido pumpkin
handful of chopped kale
half of a smaller parsley root, cubed
half of a medium carrot, cubed
a small handful of small brussel sprouts, cut in halves
a 2 inch piece of wakame seaweed
a couple of sage leaves
2 or 3 heaping tsps of dark miso, diluted
First sautee the onion on a bit of water with a pinch of salt until it softens, then add sage leaves. Continue with adding the hard vegetables – carrot, parsley root, pumpkin and also the mushroom, cover with water to submerge and cook for about 10-15 minutes. Add more water, broccoli, kale and a piece of wakame and cook for another 5 minutes. Take the pot off the stove and blend with a handheld mixer until the soup is mostly smooth, but it´s nice to leave some chunks if you like that. Add brussel sprouts and bring back to boil. After about 3 minutes (if the sprout halves are really small, this is enough) turn the flame to lowest setting so the soup stops bubbling, add diluted miso and gently simmer for 5 minutes.
I served the soup with pressure cooked rice and hato mugi (1:1 ratio) and some sauerkraut.
Filed under Recipes, Soups
In the last two days I ate a lot of oats and I think I hopelessly fell in love with their creamy goodness. I cooked them for 90 minutes in a pressure cooker (after soaking them overnight), which is a long process, but worth it.
I had some fresh sage, so I made a soup full of herbs – first I sauteed diced onion and garlic on some olive oil, then added chopped sage and dried rosemary and let it release the flavours. Afterwards I added chunks of carrot and daikon, and when they cooked soft I mixed in diluted shiro miso (young rice miso). Not bad, but I went way overboard with the herbs – so take it easy with them, especially the fresh sage is very potent…
I made two vegetable dishes. One of them was matchsticks of fresh lotus root sauteed on sliced onion and then simmered for about 15 minutes with water and tamari (lotus root can take quite a bit of tamari, because it has very little flavour on its own). Lotus is really great for the lungs and discharging mucus from them.
The second veggie dish was finely sliced fennel sauteed on water with equally finely sliced red cabbage, seasoned with chopped fresh dill and a splash of mirin (rice wine). Mmmmm, dill and fennel go together so well! The red cabbage turns the fennel completely purple, so if you want to get a nice colour effect, mix them together at the very end 😀