You cannot go wrong with a recipe from Melissa Clark of the New York Times. This butternut squash recipe proves it once again. Stirring squash into the polenta while it cooks results in a deep, rich flavor that belies how low-fat this dish actually is.
Cook the Polenta In a large pot over medium-high heat, combine 4 1/2 cups water, 1 1/2 tsp salt and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Slowly whisk in 1 cup fine polenta and stir in the squash. Turn thereat to medium low and simmer, stirring frequently, until polenta and squash are very tender – about 20 to 30 minutes. If the mixture gets too thick, add a little more water. Stir in the butter and black pepper, taste and adjust seasoning.
Cook the Sausage and Onions While the polenta cooks, heat a T oil in skillet over medium-high heat and add sausage, 2 tsp rosemary and 1 tsp fennel seeds. Cook – stirring occasionally – until the meat is golden and cooked through, 7-10 minutes. Do this in batches if necessary. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Add more oil if it looks dry, then add onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they are tender and golden – 10 to 15 minutes. Put the sausages back in the hand and stir to heat them through.
Spoon polenta into bowls and top with the sausage and onion.
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup fine polenta (not quick cooking)
- 5 oz seeded and peeled butternut squash, coarsely grated (about 1 cup)
- 3 T unsalted butter
- black pepper
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 1/2 lbs sweet or hot italian sausages (pork or chicken), slicked into 1/4″ rounds
- 2 tsp minced rosemary
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 2 small onions, halved lengthwise and sliced into 1/4″ half moons
- rosemary sprigs for garnish