Polenta with Aged Gouda, Chard & Wild Mushrooms #SundaySupper

After indulging in a huge dinner with pork, turkey, and dressing packed with fresh oysters and country sausage like we did at Thanksgiving this week, it’s often nice to go meatless for a change. This main dish topped with chard and mushrooms is an excellent vegetarian option. I also decided to add a little kale and spinach to make a power green mix. I needed it. As fast as all of our relatives and guests were here for the holiday, they were gone. It’s a love hate relationship with having a quiet house. I’m already looking forward to Christmas. Back to this dish…I adore the way the cheese infuses the polenta. It’s like a big hug of comfort that is certainly excellent on its own. In place of the gouda, you can also try aged cheddar or Parmigiano-Reggiano. When not going meatless, top this bowl of goodness with grilled shrimp or crawfish etouffee.

Polenta with Aged Gouda, Chard & Wild Mushrooms
Serves 4-6

Ingredients

8 cups of water or vegetable stock
4 tsp. sea salt
1 1/2 cups polenta or stone ground grits
2 bunches chard, tough stems removed (add kale and spinach for a power meal)
1 fresh rosemary sprig, about 6 inches long
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
4 Tbs  unsalted butter
1 Tbs. minced shallots
1 Tbs. fresh minced garlic
1 lb. assorted mushrooms cleaned and coarsely cut
1 cup shredded aged gouda, Parmigiano-Reggiano, or white cheddar cheese
1 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Preparation
In a large saucepan over high heat, bring the water and 1 1/2 tsp. of the salt to a boil. Add the polenta in a slow, steady stream and stir constantly. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring often, until the polenta pulls away from the sides of the pan, 40 to 45 minutes.

During this time also bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the chard leaves and the rosemary sprig. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the chard is tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Drain well, and then chop coarsely. Squeeze dry, and set aside.

In a fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil and melt 1 Tbs. of the butter. Add the shallots, garlic and mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms are tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Don’t overcrowd the mushrooms and don’t stir them for the first few minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a bowl. Reserve the juices in the pan.

When the polenta is ready, stir in the remaining 3 Tbs. butter, 3/4 cup of the cheese, and 1 tsp. each of the salt and pepper. Cook until the butter and cheese have melted, 3 to 4 minutes. Set the fry pan with the reserved juices over medium-high heat. Warm the juices, then add the chard and mushrooms and cook, stirring, until hot and well coated with the juices. Season with the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.

Spoon the polenta into a large serving bowl, top with the chard and mushrooms, and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup cheese. Serve family style immediately.

Sunday Supper Team

As you start putting together your menus for December gatherings, consider these dishes for vegetarians or just to change up your main dish.

Join us at 6 p.m. CST (Sunday) for our weekly Twitter chat, this week hosted by DB Stuntman of Crazy Foodie Stunts. We know it will be a lively discussion. Until then, here is a preview of the week’s recipes.

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9 thoughts on “Polenta with Aged Gouda, Chard & Wild Mushrooms #SundaySupper

  1. I never used to like polenta but I am becoming more of a fan, particularly when it’s with delicious flavors as you have hear. Looks great.

  2. Lol, no judgement! But, yes… try the polenta. It is definitely comfort food at its finest! 🙂

  3. You’re going to think I was raised in the woods by wolves but I’ve never eaten polenta before. Crazy, right? This looks so hearty and comforting, especially with that delicious mushroom chard topping. I need to try this asap!

  4. Wow, this sounds amazing. What a beautiful combination of flavors and ingredients. Polenta is the perfect base for those delicious veggies!

  5. Oh, your cheesy polenta sounds amazing! Plus, I love the mushroom-chard topping! So nice to see you sharing with the Sunday Supper team again 🙂

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