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This is not at all what I intended to make tonight but my mind could not stop thinking about how to make creamy polenta out of that roll I had. I just didn’t like the sliced version. I have never had creamy polenta and I wanted to give it a shot. I knew the flavor profile I wanted; cheesy, smokey and crunchy with a little heat. This dish is what I came up with.  Creamy polenta incorporated with some chicken stock, fresh parsley and cheddar cheese with panko crusted cod seasoned with Citrus Falksalt, smokey paprika, pepper and some kosher salt and a salsa that combined tomatoes, red onion, parsley, cilantro paste and some spicy sriracha sauce. Loved it!

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You will need:

  • 2 lb of fresh cod cut in half pieces
    • 2 cups of panko crumbs
    • 1 tbs Citron Falksalt
    • 1 tsp salt I used kosher
    • 1/2 tsp pepper
    • 1 tbs smoky paprika or Hungarian paprika
    • eggwash (2 eggs + 1 cup of milk) beaten

Creamy Cheddar Polenta:

  • 18oz Polenta (tube) I used Trader Joes organic
  • 1/2 cup of shredded Cheddar or Colby Jack cheese
  • 1 Tbs chopped parsley
  • 1 Cup of Chicken Stock

Salsa:

****Served with fresh sautéed green beans

First thing to do is start your salsa so that you can pop it in the fridge and keep it nice and cold. Dice the tomato and onion then the parsley.

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Add the cilantro paste and then the sriracha sauce to a bowl.

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Add your diced tomatoes, onions and parsley to the bowl and mix.

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Squeeze half of a lime into the salsa and chill.

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For the fish, cut each piece in half then get the panko mixture ready. 2 cups of plain panko crumbs, 1 tbs Citron Falk Salt, 1 tsp salt(I used kosher), 1/2 tsp pepper and 1 tbs smoky paprika or Hungarian paprika.   I love the lemony aspect the Falksalt brings into the coating.  If you have not tried any of these flavors yet, you really must treat yourself.

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You will also need a simple eggwash to dip the fish in before the panko. 2 eggs and 1 cup of milk whisked.Dip each pc. of fish into the eggwash.

spankcod8Then dip into the panko mixture, getting each side coated.

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Get your pan ready, coating it with olive oil and a pat of butter. When the pan starts to sizzle, lay each piece of fish into the pan.

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Cook about 3-5 min on each side then flipping until a nice golden brown.

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While the fish was on, start your creamy polenta by opening the tube and cutting the polenta into nice sized disks. This will help them to break down in the chicken stock.

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Add chicken stock to a quart sized pot, add the polenta slices and let it come to a simmer. It just needs to become hot. break up the polenta pieces with a fork some as it cooks.

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When the polenta and chicken stock come to a simmer it is ready to transfer into a blender. Any blender will do. We are just making this mixture smooth.

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Blend on low until you have a nice smooth and creamy mixture then pour back into pot.

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Add 1/2 cup of cheese and 1/4 cup of chopped parsley, a sprinkle of salt and pepper.

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Heat on low.  Stir and watch the magic happen. Oh my goodness this is heaven! It has a MUCH smoother texture than grits(if you have ever had them). It’s smooth like farina but has so much more flavor.

While the fish and polenta were cooking I sautéed some fresh green beans from the garden with some Citron falksalk, Wild Garlic Falksalt, olive oil and a touch of margarine. A perfect fresh compliment to this.

spankcodbeansNow that the fish is nice and crisp and all ready, we are ready to plate.

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Start your plate by adding a heaping ladle of the creamy polenta. I used a shallow bowl.

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Take three pieces of fish and make a star so to speak. Three corners. Pile a heaping spoonful of the sriracha salsa right on top to garnish.  Add your fresh veggies right on the side.

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I loved the freshness of this dish with the decadence of the cheesy polenta. The balance of all these flavors and textures knocked it right out of the park for me and I am sure this was and will remain a favorite.

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