A bag of cornmeal has been staring out at me from the back of the cupboard; silently mocking me for its lack of use (it was the star of my NOLA pop-up cornbread, but not used since). But no more. Polenta chips (baked, not fried) are a delicious, lighter alternative to potato, and a real win paired with a spicy tomato sauce. You’ll love this one 🍲😋
Takes 60 minutes to prepare, enough for 4 work lunches
1 pack of chicken thighs (take the skin off and bake separately for a crispy snack)
150g quick cook polenta
1 teaspoon of dried rosemary
A can of chopped tomatoes
1 red onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove, finely diced
1 chilli, finely diced
1 tablespoon of capers
A handful of green olives, halved
Salt and pepper
1) Pre-heat the oven to 180C. In a saucepan bring 400ml of water to the boil. Add a teaspoon of salt, then whisk in the polenta, stirring all the time so you don’t get any lumps. Turn off the heat, grate in the Parmesan, add a knob of butter, add the rosemary and a good grind of pepper. Line a deep baking tray with aluminium foil and pour in the polenta. Flatten with a spatula and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
2) Put a saucepan on a medium heat. Add a touch of olive oil, along with the onion, garlic and chilli. Turn the heat down low and cook for 15 minutes or so until soft. Add the canned tomatoes, olives and capers with a splash of water. Bring to the boil, then turn down and simmer for 20 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning; it should be warningly spicy!
3) When you’re ready to cook your polenta chips, take the polenta out of the fridge and cut into finger-sized rectangles. Lay on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and roast for 30 minutes until crispy.
4) At the same time as you add the polenta chips, lay the chicken thighs on another baking tray, season with salt and pepper, add a drizzle of olive oil, and roast for 30 minutes too until they are nice and sticky.
5) To serve, pour the tomato sauce over the chicken thighs and serve with a generous helping of polenta chips.