How to make Polenta, a step by step guide from knowgluten.me

How to make Polenta

We started eating polenta when we moved back to the United States from Malawi, Africa. In Malawi we ate a corn mush called Nsima with a sauce made of fresh tomatoes and onions. Nsima flour is hard (but not impossible) to find in North America, but Polenta is in almost every grocery store. Even though polenta has a grainier texture than nsima it is an excellent taste substitute.

Polenta is also a great pasta substitute, especially if you use pasta simply as a vessel to transport sauce to your mouth. It’s amazingly easy to make, keeps well, and is even better fried in oil the next day.

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How to make Polenta, a step by step guide from knowgluten.me Follow Me on Pinterest

Basic Polenta

Click HERE for a printable recipe: Basic Polenta

Ingredients

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup polenta
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil
  2. Reduce heat and whisk in polenta
  3. Continue stirring with the whisk until polenta thickens (this takes about 5 minutes)
  4. Pour into greased or Pam-sprayed 9″ round cake pan or pie plate
  5. Let set 10 minutes, polenta will become firm enough to cut slices
  6. Serve with your favorite pasta sauce or as a side to fried eggs
1 cup dry polenta Follow Me on Pinterest

1 cup dry polenta

Reduce heat and whisk in polenta Follow Me on Pinterest

Reduce heat and whisk in polenta

It's not quite thick enough Follow Me on Pinterest

Polenta, starting to thicken. Not quite ready.

that's the ticket Follow Me on Pinterest

Polenta, finally thick enough!

Polenta in a pie plate Follow Me on Pinterest

Pour polenta into a cake pan. Let it sit at least 10 minutes. It will set as it sits.

Polenta, all that's missing is your favorite sauce. Follow Me on Pinterest

The polenta is set, serve and enjoy! I like mine in a bowl so I can spoon on LOTS of sauce.

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Gluten Free Coconut Quinoa Porridge

My parents are coming to visit from Canada in two weeks!! We’re all very excited here; we haven’t seen them for six months. My mom is also gluten free, and she’s dairy free, and she’s one of those people who needs to eat breakfast every day. Living in Canada she has access to gluten free cereal and rice milk. Unless she’s going to survive on eggs, Thailand is going to be a bit of a breakfast challenge. I’ve only seen gluten free cereal at one grocery store. It’s ten dollars a box. So, I’ve been experimenting with quinoa. This morning I made a quinoa porridge with coconut milk and raisins. It was so good I made it again for dessert tonight. I topped mine with milk because I find plain coconut milk bitter. I’ll make fresh rice milk for my mom.

This recipe is made with cooked quinoa so it’s a great way to use up left-overs. I used raisins, but you can use any dried fruit, or omit it, whatever. If you’re not sure how to make quinoa, check out my quick tutorial here: How To Make Quinoa

Gluten Free Coconut Quinoa Porridge

  • 1 cup cooked Quinoa
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  1. Combine quinoa, coconut milk, raisins, sugar and cinnamon in a medium sauce pan
  2. Bring to a boil
  3. Reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring often until coconut milk has been absorbed
  4. Serve immediately topped with milk or a milk alternative and sugar to taste
quinoa porridge Follow Me on Pinterest

Enjoy

How to Make Quinoa

Here’s a quick easy tutorial on making Quinoa. I’m not a huge fan of plain quinoa, but I cook it ahead and use it in other recipes with !FLAVOR! as a side dish or a breakfast cereal.

Basic Quinoa

  1. Measure out quinoa and place in a strainer. You will cook it in twice as much water. (1 cup raw quinoa, 2 cups water makes 3 cups of cooked quinoa).
  2. Rinse the quinoa in a fine strainer. This removes naturally occurring bitter soapy stuff that the plant produces.
  3. Place quinoa and water into a sauce pan.
  4. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  5. Quinoa is done when the balls are translucent and the half moon shaped husks have separated. It will still have some chew, like al dente pasta, and the balls will pop in your teeth.
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I use a really fine metal strainer so it doesn't fall through the holes.

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Here I have 1/2 cup quinoa and 1 cup water

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    Cooked Quinoa