food for thought

by michelle

cavolo nero polenta with beef cheek ragu

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A great way to eat greens, this polenta recipe appears in River Cafe Cook Book Two by Rose Grey and Ruth Rogers.

beef-cheek-with-cavolo-nero-polenta

Beef cheeks: In some olive oil over high heat sear the beef cheeks briefly and remove them to a plate. Lower the heat and add a little more olive oil, some diced onion, garlic, carrots and celery and 1 bay leaf and cook until the onions are soft. Add 1 tablespoon of tomato paste and cook for a few minutes before adding ½ a cup of red wine. Simmer for 5 minutes then return the beef cheeks to the pot and season to taste. Cover and cook over low heat until soft and falling apart, adding a little water from time to time if necessary (this may take 2 – 3 hours).

Polenta: Boil a large pot of water and add some salt. Peel 4 large cloves of garlic and wash 8 heads of cavolo nero, discarding the stems and tough outer leaves. Blanch the cavolo nero with the garlic for 5 minutes or until tender. Drain, pulse/chop in a food processor, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste and set aside. Pour 1¼ – 1½ litres (2 – 2½ pints) of well seasoned chicken stock into a heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer. It should come halfway up the sides. Measure 250g (9 oz) of polenta into a jug with a good spout then, while whisking constantly, pour the polenta into the stock in a continuous steady stream making sure that no lumps form. When the polenta bubbles reduce the heat and stir with a wooden spoon until it pulls away from the sides of the pan (this can take 40-45 minutes unless you opt for instant polenta). Stir in 200g (7 oz) of unsalted butter, 150g (5 oz) of finely grated parmesan and the cavolo nero.

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Written by michelle picker

October 29, 2015 at 5:57 am

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