A traditional and fun way to serve family-style polenta. This one is topped with a rich tomato sauce and a delicious plant-based Italian sausage, but feel free to top it with whatever you like.
To start the polenta, place the cold water and/or stock into a medium-sized, tall pot. Add the polenta to the cold liquid and whisk to combine.
Turn on the heat to medium-high and bring the polenta to a boil. Let the polenta cook for about 10 minutes or so, whisking often. Once the mixture starts to thicken, adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. With a long handled wooden spoon or heat-proof spatula, stir occasionally, making sure to scrape the bottom, sides and corners of the pot to prevent scorching. Let the polenta cook for at least 30 minutes or until it is cooked through and done to your liking.
(In the meantime, you can cook the sausages – see next step).
Once the polenta is done, taste it for seasoning and stir in the olive oil, if desired.
*Note: Here is a recipe to make your own Plant-Based Sausage — either form into small patties or form into sausages.
To fry the sausages, heat a stainless-steel pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the oil, followed by the sausages.
Fry until browned on both sides and cooked through. Once done, set aside to cool slightly.
Place the Tomato Sauce into a small pot and bring to a simmer to heat through.
Once the polenta has cooked, pour it onto a large, clean cutting board or platter.
Once the polenta has been poured onto the board, the next step is to add the tomato sauce. Spoon the sauce onto the polenta, leaving about 1" -inch of the border blank.
To finish the polenta, slice the sausages on the bias. Place over the tomato sauce and top with some chopped basil.
If desired, drizzle with some extra-virgin olive oil to finish.
To serve the polenta, simply transfer the board or platter to the table and let everyone serve themselves…or give each person a spoon and let them dive in!
Polenta on a board can be topped with anything you like: from vegetables and braised greens to sautéed mushrooms and a variety of other sauces. The options are endless.