Polenta or pulenda with mushrooms
Polenta or “pulenda”, as we say in Montalcino, to keep warm in the winter a dish that brings joy and can accompany Cenerentola because both stay by the fireplace
I adore hunting for mushrooms and in the woods around Fattoria del Colle it is easy to find them. It is very difficult for me to come home empty handed and there is no need for physical exertion either. Few porcini but many pinaroli, lecciaioli, bigine, cappelle del prete, paonazzi, ordinali, but no ovuli. I also enjoy cleaning them, when I have time. I do not eat many but I am very proud to offer them to friends especially with Pappardelle or polenta.
Polenta or “pulenda” as we say in Montalcino, is the food for when it is cold and when the North wind blows or when it snows. To cut it with a bit of thread is already a feast, if then you add a glass of Cenerentola Doc Orcia, the fairytale with the lit fireplace with the copper pot … hoping that the Prince Charming will arrive.
INGREDIENTS FOR POLENTA WITH MUSHROOMS
For 4 people
Easy, takes about an hour
500 g of corn flour – large grain, 15 g of extra virgin olive oil, a spoonful of coarse salt and 2 lt of water.
For the dressing: two garlic cloves, extra virgin olive oil, 500 g of mixed mushrooms (fresh or frozen), 500 g of pureed tomato, salt, grated Parmigiano.
PREPARING THE POLENTA WITH MUSHROOMS
Put the water in a pot, add the salt and bring to the boil. Add the oil and then the corn flour keep whipping until it comes to the boil again. Lower the flame and continue cooking while stirring for 50 minutes. You need patience and strength, and the job finishes in turning up the flame for a couple of minutes so that the polenta comes away from the rim of the pot. Pour it onto a wooden board and cut with a cotton thread then serve and eat still hot.
While the polenta is cooking, clean and wash the mushrooms. Then dry and chop them and put in a pan where the garlic is browning in the oil. In the case of frozen mushrooms cook them directly from the freezer. Add salt. When the mushrooms have used up their own water add the tomato puree, lower the flame and continue to cook for about twenty minutes stirring occasionally and keep the lid on the pan.
Generally the mushroom sauce is added to the polenta directly when in the dish, and with an abundant dusting of grated Parmigiano.