Friday, May 13, 2005

Cheesy Polenta and Egg Casserole

Cheesy Polenta and Egg Casserole (Adapted from Eating Well)

1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces hot Italian turkey sausage, casing removed
2 ounces shredded fontina cheese
2 ounces fresh grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
4 large eggs

In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium. Add onion - cook until softened, but not browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in broth and water - bring to a boil. Gradually whisk in cornmeal. Add salt and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, for about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and cook, whisking frequently, until very thick, 10 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat remaining oil over medium. Add sausage - cook, stirring to break up the sausage, until lightly browned and no longer pink, about 4 to 6 minutes. Scoop out to a cutting board and set aside until cool enough to handle. Finely chop the sausage.

Preheat oven to 350 with the rack in the upper third of oven.

Once the polenta is done, stir in fontina and 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano. Scoop the polenta into a 9" square baking pan coated with nonstick spray and spread to smooth the top.

Make 4 2" wide indentations in the polenta with the back of a tablespoon. Break eggs, one at a time, into a small cup - slip each into one of the indentations and lightly season with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Scatter the sausage on the polenta and sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano evenly on top of the eggs.

Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Turn the broiler on and bake until the egg whites are set, about 2 to 4 minutes. Remove and let stand about 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

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