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January 9, 2010

Breakfast Polenta

For the past few months, we’ve been enjoying breakfast polenta at the Whole Foods breakfast to-go bar.  It’s a nice little routine we have. I go to yoga on Sundays, Casey watches Coop and I pick up some polenta & coffee on my way back home.  It’s thick, creamy and super delicious.  We sit at our kitchen table and devour it slowly while Cooper naps. It ties us over until our late afternoon lunch.  And it’s heaven.

This morning was different. I woke up with the urge to have Breakfast Polenta immediately!  Not even coffee first. NOW.   And since yoga is tomorrow, what excuse do I have to go out and pick some up?  None.

I mentally prepared myself for this polenta adventure to be like risotto– where I had to coax the grains into thickness by stirring it every second….babysitting it….for a long time. But NO!!!  It all came together in a blink of an eye.  It thickened up perfectly.  I was even able to run away to help change a diaper in the process.  Totally glamorous, huh?  If it got too thick, I just added a little more milk.

The only challenging thing is cleaning up the pots & bowls…which are still sitting in the sink.  It’s Saturday, and I’ll get to that later.

This recipe comes from Heidi at 101cookbooks.  It’s a wonderful post!  You should read it!  I like her idea of having a Breakfast Polenta party…and supplying all of the sides!  A big batch, a room full of friends for brunch.  What could be better?  Playing around with sweet & savory toppings sounds pretty fun too!

It all starts with a cup of polenta.

just 1 cup!

I found some in my pantry.  I thanked myself for purchasing it many moons ago.  You rock, Tracy!

polenta bag

Add it to boiling water and stir stir stir! I added milk every now and then to make it creamier.

stirring polenta

Now you have a blank canvas!

a blank canvas

Casey enjoys a LOT of brown sugar in his….with some butter, raisins & nuts underneath.

casey likes extra brown sugar

Today I added brown sugar, raisins, walnuts & a dollop of Greek yogurt on top to mine.

how I like mine

It’s soo filling, I doubt you will want seconds!

it was good!

Soo yum on a cold winter day like today.

Breakfast Polenta

(recipe-101 cookbooks.com)

  • 4cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup coarse polenta (not quick cooking)
  • milk or cream

Bring the water to a boil. Stir in the salt and polenta. Stir and stir and stir. Reduce the heat (you might want to wear an apron as the polenta has a tendency to spurt and spit). Simmer for at least 30-35 minutes (it took me about 20 mins).  If the polenta gets too thick and starts to dry out along the way, just stir in more water 1/4 cup at a time (I added some whole milk instead to make it creamier). In the end I like my breakfast polenta to be on the loose side, thick enough to coat a spoon, but loose enough that it has trouble holding shape. Serve warm in bowls with your favorite toppings!

Serves about 4

I followed Joy’s steps for the leftovers here. Maybe we’ll make some fried polenta sticks later!

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  • jenifer

    that looks perfect, but i already started on my faux parisian baguette after dance class this morning; maybe sunday! thanks for sharing :)

  • Michelle

    I was just asking what polenta was to my friends this week! Thanks for the idea. I think I’m going to have to try it now. And as always, love the photos!

  • Pam

    For a savory take on this yummy dish, try stirring in some grated sharp Cheddar. Shake on some hot sauce and devour. Heaven in a bowl.

  • Janet

    That’s so funny – I just bought polenta in the bulk section 2 days ago and looked up Heidi’s recipe. I have yet to make it, but this is clearly a sign! Hmm, Sunday breakfast… I’m going to AntiGravity Yoga (well, depending on how much I drink tonight!) and this sounds like a perfect follow-up, if you don’t mind me stealing your yoga-and-polenta routine. :)

  • Holly @ Times Two

    If I’m not encouraged, I don’t know what I am. We eat polenta for dinner regularly ….but for BREAKFAST?! I love it!

  • Dana

    Now, why have I never thought of this? I like my oatmeal salty which most people think is really weird. But if I had breakfast polenta and made it savory, no one would bat an eyelash. Love it! I go to yoga on Saturday mornings when my husband takes the boys. It keeps me sane.

  • laura

    We love polenta! Try it as a base for a taco bowl of sorts or w/fajita fixings so so good! Just plain cheese rocks too.

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  • Daniel

    lovely as ever.

    tried it. loved it. very easy to make.
    seems like a great breakfast to make in the weekends, split in to servings of one and take to work(the add-ons in a seperate bag).

    thanks Tracy

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