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Grilled Polenta and Balsamic Mushrooms

A main course and a salad in one: polenta, arugula, and portobellos with a warm balsamic sauce. The trick to grilling polenta is to know when to flip it. Wait until the entire piece can be lifted off the grates cleanly with a metal spatula. This way, the crisp surface won't stick to the grill.

  • Servings: 4
Grilled Polenta and Balsamic Mushrooms

Photography: Marcus Nilsson

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 2007

Ingredients

  • 6 portobello mushrooms (about 1 pound), stems and caps separated, halved if very large
  • 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1/2 cup homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken or vegetable stock
  • 12 pieces set polenta (about 1/2 batch) Basic Polenta (Soft or Set), cut into 1-inch-thick rectangles or triangles
  • 2 cups arugula (2 ounces)
  • 8 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved

Directions

  1. Toss portobellos with garlic, herbs, salt, pepper, vinegar, and 1/4 cup oil in a large bowl. Let stand at room temperature, tossing occasionally, for 1 hour.

  2. Transfer portobellos to a plate. Pour marinade into a small saucepan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 1 minute. Add stock. Raise heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Stir in remaining tablespoon oil, and remove from heat.

  3. Preheat grill to medium-high. (If you are using a charcoal grill, coals are ready when you can hold your hand 5 inches above grill for just 3 to 4 seconds.) Lightly brush top and bottom of polenta with oil, and place in center of grill. Cook, flipping once, until polenta is marked, crisp, and no longer sticks to grill, 6 to 8 minutes per side. Meanwhile, place portobellos on cooler part of grill, and cook, turning frequently to avoid burning, until tender, about 10 minutes.

  4. Place arugula on a platter, and arrange polenta and portobellos on top. Drizzle about half the sauce over portobellos. Top with Parmigiano-Reggiano. Serve immediately with extra sauce on the side.

Reviews (2)

  • brieh 2 Feb, 2011

    Absolutely delicious! I ended up with barely any sauce - maybe 1.5 tablespoons, so I was a bit concerned, but it ended up being fine. The whole thing was sooo flavourful.

  • LadyLuxe1 29 Sep, 2008

    I make this for dinner regularly and bake it at 400 degrees in the oven instead of using the grill and it turns out great. To simulate the grill I suggest using a baking sheet that is slotted (I think mine is from Nordicware).

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