Thursday, March 29, 2012

Poached Egg Over Creamy Polenta (with mushrooms, blue cheese & pistachios)

There are times in a young woman's life when she just needs to let go and dive in...

...When she's gotta let her (short) hair down....

...Throw caution to the wind....

...And just do it...

...When she just needs to take a chance...

...And indulge her fantasies...

That happened...

Holy Hannah Montana!

Seriously. I saw this recipe and food orgasm'd. Twice.

Anyone who knows me know I love me some good polenta. Toss in a few mushrooms, a couple bold flavors like blue cheese and pistachios, and top it off with a creamy decadent poached egg - and you've got yourself a lover for life. Whether you want me or not. 

Simple. Divine. Comforting. Gourmet. And all at the same time. I love it.

Poached Egg Over Creamy Polenta
(with mushrooms, blue cheese & pistachios)
adapted from The Healthy Foodie 


1 C Fine Ground Cornmeal.
6 Cups Salted Water or Chicken/Veggie Stock (or mixture of both).
80g Fresh Mushrooms (I used a mixture of oyster & shiitake).
1 Zucchini, cut into quarters and BBQ'd briefly (these were leftovers I just chucked in).
40g Pistachio, shelled & roughly chopped.
40g Blue Cheese, crumbled.
1 Tsp Fresh Thyme, de-stemmed & roughly chopped.
1 Lemon for juice.
3/4 C Parmesan Cheese, grated.
Kosher Salt & Fresh Cracked Black Pepper.
1 Poached Egg.
Drizzle of Truffle Oil (optional).
What to Do:

In a large saucepan, bring the juice of half a lemon and the stock or salted water to a light boil over medium heat.

Add corn meal with a Tsp or two of salt and pepper in a slow steady stream, whisking continually. Once you have added all the cornmeal, reduce the heat to medium-low. Whisk/cook for about 10 minutes or until cornmeal has reached the desired consistency and cooked through. Don't stop whisking though or it'll clump!

Take off heat, stir in fresh thyme and parmesan. Mix well. Cover and set aside until plating. 

Drizzle a little bit of olive oil in a  medium non stick frying pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until nice and golden on both sides, about 2-3 minutes total.

Meanwhile, poach the egg. In a small pan heat some salted water over medium-high heat. As it heats, crack the egg into a small bowl. Add a little vinegar (about a Tbsp) to the water and the juice from half a lemon - this will keep your whites from flying around when you pour the egg in. When water starts to simmer, gently slip the egg in the water and push it back with a large spoon to help it take shape.

Cover lightly and cook for about 2-3 minutes, until white is completely set and opaque but yolk is still runny. Remove from water with a slotted spoon and allow to drain well.

Laddle polenta into a bowl or shallow serving plate. Top with the mushrooms and poached egg. Sprinkle generously with blue cheese and chopped pistachios on top. 

Garnish with a few sprigs of fresh thyme, a small sprinkle of salt and pepper, and if you like - a little truffle oil. Serve while hot!


 What dishes or ingredients give you double food orgasm?


This post is linked up with This Chick Cooks; Cast Party Wednesday; Simple Lives Thursday; Full Plate Thursday; Tastetastic Thursday;Fresh Bites Friday; The Hearth & Soul Blog Hop via The 21st Century Housewife; Tasty Tuesdays; Slightly Indulgent Tuesday; Tuesday Talent Show.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Beet Medley & Quail Egg Salad w/ Honey Anise Vinaigrette

The Lowdown:

Okay, so this is meal is purely because I have been a horrible person over the last few days. I'm pretty sure in the last week I've eaten fast food at least 40 times. Not to mention, my lovely girlfriend declared that she only wanted to eat fruits and vegetables all day (Ha! That's going to happen). To make up for all that crap I've put into my body, I'm going to repent. I'm sorry father for I have sinned, please accept this healthy meal as a testament to my willingness to change my ways... temporarily.

How could this meal possibly be bad? It has more beets than Dr. Dre. Normally I hate salads. I find them boring, cold, and about as eventful as a Dilbert comic strip. How is that comic still being produced anyway? I mean seriously. The only thing funny about it is the irony that it isn't funny., 2012
Point, set, and match. This is crap. Now that I've wasted a sufficient amount of your life reading that comic strip I will resume with wasting a sufficient amount of your life reading this post. 

To recap; salad = Dilbert = boring. 
Where as, beets + quail's eggs + anise = ♥.

Just so everyone knows, I hate black licorice. However, the hint of it that this dressing has goes quite nicely with the earthy notes of the beets. Other than the pain of getting the anise seeds out of the husks (I actually just got lazy and blended the crap out of the star anise pods), this was a simple and easy recipe that offered quite a different take on the usual ways to prepare beets. The different colour beets also provide for a nice display and can add to the wow factor. It is also a great cure for the common fast food bender.

The Playlist:

1 Red beet
1 Golden beet
1 Candycane beet
2 Chicken breasts, cooked and thinly sliced (optional)
5-10 Quail's eggs, hard boiled
1 cube, Chicken bullion
Salt & Pepper
Olive oil


1/2 inch Leak (white part), minced
1 tsp Pepper (or more to taste)
1 tsp Kosher salt
1/8 cup Apple cider vinegar
1/8 cup Champagne berry vinegar
1/4 cup Virgin olive oil
1-2 tbsp Honey
1tsp Anise seeds, ground

The Skinny:

  1.  Mix all the vinaigrette ingredients together and refrigerate until ready to be served.
  2. Put the beets in separate pots and cover with water (the candycane and golden beets can go into the same pot). Add the chicken bullion to the water. Bring to a boil and cook until beets pass the "fork test" (about 45-60mins). Pour water out of pots and fill with cold water. Allow beets to cool.
  3. In a small pot add quail's eggs and enough water to boil them in. Boil for 5 minutes then remove from heat, allow to sit for 5 minutes, and then pour the water out. Allow eggs to cool.
  4. Skin the beets. If cooked properly you should be able to apply pressure using your thumbs and the skin will come off easily. (The beets can be done ahead of time and refrigerated).
  5. Peal the shells off of the quail's eggs and cut in half lengthwise.
  6. On medium heat, heat olive oil (or butter) in two large pans. Place the different colour beets in separate pans and saute until slightly browned (10-20mins).
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Put beets, chicken, and eggs together and add dressing.
  9. Serve while beets are still warm.

Featured in:33 Shades of Green, Chef-in-Training, Mandy's Recipe Box,

Stay Rad - H