Creamy Garlic and Parmesan Polenta

To me, polenta was always this fancy, daunting, impossible dish. It seemed like it was a ton of work, easy to screw up and honestly, I was intimidated. For the sake of my ego, I decided to show polenta who is boss. Things worked out well for me and everyone who ate dinner at our house that night. Not only is this the perfect side dish to just about anything, it really is EXTREMELY easy and insanely inexpensive. This makes a huge batch... you could easily cut it in half for 2-4 people.


What you need:
2 cloves minced garlic
8 cups chicken stock
2 cups polenta (the dry kind, not the premade)
a knob of butter (eh 2-4 tablespoons depending on what you like)
as much freshly grate parmesan cheese as you feel comfortable with... the more the better

Start by boiling the chicken stock and garlic. Once it is boiled, reduce to a simmer and add in the polenta. Continually whisk (yes, you need a whisk) until the polenta thickens enough that it is no longer sinking to the bottom of the pan when you stop stirring. This is where the easy part comes in. I always was under the impression that you had to CONSTANTLY whisk polenta for like an hour to make it right. Not necessarily the case. I whisked for a few minutes until it started to thicken... then I went about making the rest of dinner, only going back to whisk a couple times every few minutes. After about 20 or 30 minutes, your polenta should be thick and creamy. If it seems too thick, add a little extra chicken stock. Once it is just about done, stir in the butter and parmesan. That's it! Here it is shown with my Crispy Garlic and Herb Chicken Thighs, quick and easy comfort food for a rainy day.

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