Oh, This Meal

This gorgeous, gorgeous meal.

It sang of summer.  It was bright.  It was seasonal.  It was so easy.

You should make it, and soon.

Will you?  It comes together in less than a half hour.  It goes well with wine.

What other convincing do you need?

cherry tomatoes and fresh corn polenta

I’m not going to write a list of ingredients, nor will I bullet the directions for making this.  I’m going to write it like you’re in the kitchen with me.  Because I’d like you to be.  And because this would be a good one to make together.  It serves more than 2.  I liked it too much to say it serves 4.

To start, you want to get all the ingredients for this together in one place before you take to the stove.  This is something I never do, except when a recipe comes together in the blink of an eye, and you really have to.  So you kind of have to here.  Take the kernels off 2 ears of corn, and set aside.  Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.  In an oven-proof stockpot, bring 3 C water or flavorful stock (or a combination of the two if you have one cup of stock left and don’t feel like opening another container, oh hello!) to a boil.  Stir in 2 T butter, 1 tsp. salt (but not if you’re going gung-ho with stock, then you can leave the salt out), and corn kernels.  Take 1 C polenta, and slowly whisk into boiling mixture.  Let mixture come to a boil again, stirring occasionally.  Reduce heat to medium-low, and stir constantly, till mixture thickens, about 5-7 minutes.  Cover, and place in oven to stay warm.  Then, heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet.  Chop a clove or two of garlic (whatever amount seems right to you) and let that heat up over medium heat, with a shake or two of red pepper flakes.  Add 2 pints cherry tomatoes, and get the heat going on high.  Let the tomatoes hang out in the skillet, stirring only occasionally, until their skins blister and pop.  This takes any number of minutes, and all I can tell you is that in one minute, you will be wondering if the blistering and the popping will ever happen, and the next moment, almost all the tomatoes will be ready to rock and roll.  Add a handful of julienned basil and stir tomatoes another minute or two.  You want about half of the tomatoes to have popped and be stewy messes and half to be intact.  Remove from heat, and grab polenta from the oven.  Make a bed of polenta in a shallow bowl, and top with cherry tomato mixture, Parmesan and more fresh basil.

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