Cabbage and Polenta in a hurry recipe
Few nights ago I was looking through the fridge for a quick fix dinner when I discovered a forgotten bag of coleslaw. Now, it was no way me and my family could have coleslaw for dinner, I said while noticing that was already 6:15 pm. But then I had an inspiration: of course we can have it, it has cabbage and carrots, already a healthy choice. I just have to add some meat and fire up some polenta and voila! the dinner.
It took me ten minutes to gather and prepare my ingredients and by seven I was serving cabbage with polenta. If you find yourself in the position to use leftover coleslaw my recipe may come in handy.
Bellow I will list the ingredients and the way I did it. I also took some photo to illustrate it. I will call this recipe cabbage and polenta in a hurry.
cabbage and smoked sausage step by step in pictures
Ingredients for cabbage dish:
Coleslaw - about 2 to 3 lb
Smocked sausage - 1/2 lb
olive oil - maybe 1 tbs
onion - 1/2 cup
tomato - one, medium
salsa - 1 cup
dash of paprika
Ingredients for polenta:
3 cups of water
1 cup polenta grits
1 oz butter
salt to taste
Here’s how to make the cabbage:
1. In a big skillet or pot heat up the oil The pot has to be big because coleslaw take a lot of space at the beginning. I used a 6 qt cast iron pot.
2. Chop the sausage, bite size, add it to the pot and stir. Keep stirring often, while you chop the onion. Sprinkle paprika, salt and pepper. Cook 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Add onion. Stir. Cook until onion is soft. In the mean time chop up the tomato and set it aside.
4. When the onion is soft, add coleslaw, one big batch at a time, and keep stirring to evenly coat it with fat. Then add another batch and stir and so on till you finish the coleslaw. I add it in three batches.
5. Cover it loosely and let it cook on medium heat. Then start the polenta. (see below) Don’t forget to stir your cabbage from time to time.
6. When the cabbage is soft, maybe 15 minutes into cooking, add the chopped tomato and salsa, and cook it for five more minutes. Check for salt. Turn off the heat and let it rest while you finish your polenta.
Tips for cabbage:
- Don’t have coleslaw? Try a cabbage, finally shredded.
- Don’t have smocked sausage? Try smoked beacon.
- Don’t have tomatoes or salsa? Try a can of chopped tomatoes.
Here is how to make polenta:
1. Pour 3 cups of water and one tbs of salt in a 2 qt sauce pan.
2. Bring the water to boil.
3. Turn down the heat and pour the polenta grits. Stir. Keep stirring. Keep stirring...keep stirring...keep stirring....You have to keep stir for as long as you need to cook the polenta, maybe 30 minutes.
4. Somewhere, along the road, add the butter and keep stirring.
5. Thirty minutes after, and when your grits are soft, the polenta is done.
Polenta step by step in pictures
Tips for polenta:
Buy grits for polenta. Not all grits are cooking and tasting the same. In my country (Romania) you can find polenta grits everywhere and most grits are suitable for polenta but here in US things are different).
After trying many kinds, I finally settled. I, now, only use the brand called Bob’s Red Mill and the product reads “Corn Grits, also known as polenta”.
Use a nonstick pot, in good condition. This way you’ll only stir continuously the first 5 minutes and only once every few minutes afterwards.
When is done, polenta is very thick and becomes hard to stir.
Even if your pan doesn’t stick, it is important to stir so the grits can cook evenly.
To make a round polenta, like a cake, you have to spoon it into a grassy bowl, then let it cool for few minute and turn it up side down on a plate.
When you are done with polenta then your dinner is ready. Serve and enjoy.