Polenta cakes are always so much to make and eat. They take a few steps, but they are very simple and so worth the wait! These normally get eaten before I can finish frying the whole batch. They are addicting!
I love food with texture and these cakes hit the spot. Crispy on the outside but creamy and buttery inside. Buttery corn, that’s what they taste like to me. I love to serve them with shaves if parmesan cheese for a salty touch.
What you need to make Polenta Cakes
Polenta grind grits. I used Professor Torbert’s Orange Corn Grits. You can also use any leftover grits.
Water. Always make sure it is at a boiling point when you add the grits. Chicken stock or some milk can also be used for extra flavor and creaminess.
Salt and pepper to taste.
Oil for frying. I like to use a “cooking olive oil” because is more tolerant to high temperatures than extra virgin olive oil. You can also use avocado oil or even canola.
Parmesan cheese for serving. I strongly suggest buying a small block of parmesan cheese and grate it or shave it on the cakes right after they are done. I know parmesan cheese can be a little pricy but also, a little goes a long way when it is fresh, and it will last a long time in your dairy drawer.
Thyme. Fresh herbs for garnish are always best. Parsley or basil would be great in this recipe too.
Helpful tips and tricks
Be prepared. Because there is so much moisture in the grits, the oil can splatter a little bit. Just gently place the cake on the hot oil and step back. Don’t bother the cakes until they have started to brown (about 4-5) minutes. Flip it and take it out after another 4-5 minutes.
I like very crispy polenta cakes, that’s why I am making them thin. Traditional polenta cakes could be more about 1/2″ thick. If you want thicker cakes, double the amount of grits or use an 8×8 dish instead of 9×13.