sharing recipes from one generation to the next
Having a retiree in the house is a challenge at lunch time. There are only so many cheese toasties a man will eat, so when preparing dinner I try to think ahead and cook extras to transform into a delicious lunch.
Soft polenta and Sicilian Caponata are my go to dinner time accompaniments for simply grilled meats purely and simply because I know that the next day’s lunch the will require no thought and next to no effort.
I cook enough vegetables and polenta to satisfy a family of four then when serving dinner I set aside half the polenta in an oiled shallow straight sided container to chill overnight. I also reserve half the caponata which like any braised dish will mature in the fridge.
About 15 minutes before lunchtime I cut the polenta in blocks and shallow fry them in olive oil until a golden crunchy crust forms. The caponata I reheat in a small pan on the stove top, which just leaves the eggs to poach or boil, depending on their age.
Crunchy fried polenta and sweet and sour caponata topped with a soft poached egg is a feast for the eyes and the belly, one of those dishes that has an elusive moorish quality that you wish would never end. This is leftovers fit for a king!
Crunchy Fried Polenta
Cook the polenta according to the manufacturers instructions but here are some general guidelines
Poached Eggs my way without gadgets or plastic wrap
Crack each egg into a cup.
Fill a wide deep pan to the depth of 10cm with cold water. Add 1 tablespoon white vinegar, then bring the water to the boil.
Create a whirlpool in the pan by stirring rapidly with a large spoon, drop the eggs into the whirlpool one at a time then reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting. A perfectly poached egg will take about 3 minutes, depending on the temperature of the egg when you add it to the water and how quickly your cooker reheats the water. Do not to let the water boil again.
When the egg is cooked, the egg white will look opaque but the yolk area will still be wobbly.
Remove the egg with a slotted spoon onto paper towel to drain then serve.