Recipe Sweet potato polenta with braised mushrooms & onions

Morning Glory

Obsessive cook
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Maidstone, Kent, UK
Sweet potato turns polenta a gorgeous saffron yellow colour. Here, the sweetness of the potato is offset by the use of tangy milk whey (you can substitute buttermilk) and sharp parmesan. A drizzle of balsamic reduction adds a complexity to the mushrooms and onions. The balsamic reduction will keep almost indefinitely so you can make it ahead of time.

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Ingredients (serves 2)
For the balsamic reduction:

6 tbsp balsamic vinegar

For the mushrooms & onions:
2 tbsp oil (I used rapeseed oil)
1 medium red onion, peeled and cut into slices
2 large cloves of garlic, slivered
6 chestnut mushrooms, cut into slices and/or halves

For the polenta:
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
225 g vegetable stock
300 ml milk whey (or substitute buttermilk)
90g polenta (I use quick cook)
25g butter
20g grated parmesan
Salt to taste

To serve:
Finely chopped parsley
Chilli flakes (optional)

Method
For the balsamic reduction:
  1. Place the vinegar in a small saucepan and heat over a low heat until it is reduced by half and becomes thick and syrupy. Set aside and leave to cool.
For the mushrooms and onions:
  1. Fry the onion slices and in 1 tbsp oil until softened. Add the garlic slivers and cook gently until the onion is slightly caramelised.
  2. Add the mushrooms and the remaining tbsp of oil to the pan. Cook gently until the mushrooms are tender. Set aside and keep warm.
For the polenta:
  1. Simmer the sweet potato cubes in the stock until tender (approximately 15 mins). Blend the cooked potatoes and stock until smooth (I use a stick blender).
  2. Return to the pan with the milk whey and half the butter. Heat through and then gradually add the polenta, stirring as you go.
  3. Simmer for 6 to 8 minutes until the polenta is thickened and creamy. Add a little water if the mixture becomes too thick.
  4. Add the parmesan and the remaining butter and stir through until amalgamated. Add salt to taste.
To serve:
Pour the polenta onto plates or into bowls and arrange the mushrooms and onions on top. Drizzle with the balsamic reduction. Sprinkle with finely chopped parsley and chilli flakes (if using)

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