This Creamy Polenta with Spinach and an Egg is the third recipe I talked about in my How Do You Like Your Polenta? post. Instead of having polenta as a side dish this recipe is a meal for breakfast. You can always add a meat like pork sausage, ground turkey or even a finely chopped up anchovy. Serves 2
1/2 cup polenta
2 cups Water
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cups fresh spinach, roughly chopped or 1 cup frozen
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
2 cloves garlic, minced
Garnish: grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
Bring the water and salt to a boil in a medium-sized pot, then turn the heat down to low and slowly pour in the polenta while stirring briskly with a wooden spoon. Stirring while pouring is crucial to keep the polenta creamy and smooth—no lumps! Once the cornmeal becomes smooth and thick, place a lid on the pot with the spoon still in it so that steam can escape.
Let the polenta cook while you prepare the rest of the meal, checking in occasionally to give it a stir. The total cooking time should be about 25 to 30 minutes, but if you're in a rush, you can eat it after 15, it just won't be as delicious.
Meanwhile, chop the spinach and mince the garlic. Set them aside. Add a bit of olive oil or butter to a pan on medium heat. Let the pan heat up until it sizzles when you flick it with water. Add the garlic and chile flakes, if using. *If you decide to use an anchovy, chop it up and add it here with the garlic. Let them cook until you can smell them, about 1 minute. (As far as ground turkey or pork sausage, I’d cook it in a separate skillet and add it at the end between the spinach and the fried egg)
Add the spinach and toss it around with a spoon or tongs, or just swirl the pan to coat the spinach with the garlic mixture. Let everything cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until the spinach is wilted. Remove the pan from the heat and move its contents to a bowl to wait for the polenta and eggs.
When the polenta is about 2 minutes from done, start with the eggs. Wipe the pan quickly with a cloth, then put it back on medium heat. Splash a bit more olive oil in the pan and wait for it to get hot. Crack the two eggs into the pan and cover with a lid. This will steam them, making sunny-side-up eggs with fully cooked whites.
Scoop the polenta into a pair of bowls. Add some grated Parmesan and lots of salt and pepper. Layer about half the vegetables over the polenta. Once the whites of the eggs are cooked, remove the eggs from the pan with a spatula and lay them over the polenta and vegetables. Top with the rest of the vegetables and further sprinklings of cheese. Yum Yum!