I blame it on growing up with an Italian step-father and all of the very valid arguments about who does food better; northerners or southerners; zia Louisa or zia Carmena, et cetera and so on – but I really like taking the piss out of Italian-inspired cooking by meshing north and south and tossing proper methods to the wind.
That is honky-white-Canadian-girl privilege.
Add feeling particularly lazy + being gifted with a bouquet of fresh parsley and basil + having a sac full of frozen, prepared polenta meant making the bastardiest of delicious dirty bastard dishes: polenta pescatore.
- 1 medium red onion, diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 red pepper, finely chopped
- 2 cups frozen seafood
- 1/4 cup water (if you defeated your seafood in water, use that!)
- 1/4 cup whiskey, vodka, or dry, white wine
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
- Ground pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 6 half inch slices of prepared polenta
- Grated Parmesan, Asiago, or Romano cheese for serving
What you do:
- Heat the olive oil in a heavy frying pan over medium-low.
- Add the onion and cook until translucent.
- Begin frying polenta slices in vegetable oil over medium-low heat.
- Add the red pepper.
- Simmer until everything is very soft.
- Add the seafood, water, and booze.
- Let simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the tomatoes and nutmeg and let simmer another ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir the parsley and basil.
- Serve over fried polenta slices, top with cheese and freshly ground black pepper to taste.