Last year I raved about Huckleberry, Zoe Nathan’s little gem in Santa Monica. I finally bought the book. Glorious, I say. Glorious. On this episode of #domesticwithdad, we decided to make her recipe for polenta with roasted asparagus, prosciutto, and fried eggs. Need I say it again? Glorious.
I am a super-fan of roasting vegetables. Salt, pepper, and maybe a seasoning or two if you’re feeling fancy. It’s a nice alternative to sautéing vegetables or heaven forbid, boiling them. Grilling is also an option … if you have a grill.
The recipe isn’t difficult, but team #domesticwithdad needs to work on its time-management skills. A few tips based on our test-run:
- Sprinkle the cornmeal into the water a tablespoon at a time. Yeah. You read that right. Tablespoon at a time. Trust me, it definitely beats mashing out all the lumps after your cornmeal seizes. Yuck.
- Blanch your asparagus! We forgot … and our asparagus were a little too soft. Blanching will stop the asparagus from cooking and keep them firm.
- Please don’t scramble the eggs. Fry the eggs. Over easy is good, over medium, still good. Over … hard? At your own risk.
You may be wondering, what’s the difference between grits and polenta? What even are grits?!
Please don’t ask what grits are. Southern food staple. I’ll leave it that. Go try some and report back.
According to one of my favorite cooking sites, grits and polenta are made with different types of corn, which also yield different textures. I prefer polenta, which has a firmer (and therefore better) texture, over grits, which are softer or mushier. Also note that grits are (as aforementioned) Southern, and polenta is an Italian dish.
Also, please use prosciutto … don’t sub for bacon; it’s not the same. Prosciutto, like the lamb chop, has been one of the more formative foods on my foodie journey. Eat it. Like it.
Polenta with Roasted Asparagus, Prosciutto, and Eggs (from Zoe Nathan’s book, Huckleberry)
2 bunches asparagus, trimmed
8-12 slices prosciutto
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 cup (160g) cornmeal
4 tbs (55g) butter
1/2 cup (50g) grated Parmesan
- Preheat oven to 500˚F. Roast prosciutto until crispy, 10-15 minutes.
- Bring a pot of water to boil and add salt. Set aside a bowl of ice water. Cook asparagus until tender (should not be super squishy/soft). Blanch asparagus for 2-3 minutes to stop cooking. Important if you do not want squishy asparagus in the final product.
- Place asparagus on pan lined with parchment or foil. Drizzle with (good!) olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in oven for approximately 15 minutes, until browned.
- In a saucepan, bring water, garlic, and salt to a boil. Gradually whisk the cornmeal into the water. I recommend 1 tablespoon at a time. Otherwise, your polenta will horribly lumpy.
- Fry eggs. Over easy or medium, but please don’t scramble or cook the yolk through.
- Toss (or plate nicely) everything into a bowl, top with parmesan, and serve.
Happy cooking, friends!