Breakfast Polenta with Poached Eggs
My favourite breakfast is a hot caffè latte and a couple of slices of Italian sweet bread. Not exactly healthy, is it? The truth is that if I do have that for breakfast, I’m hungry again in an hour. I’ve found that what the experts say is, indeed, true: a complete breakfast consisting of complex carbs, protein and fibre will keep you going all day. So, I try to vary what I eat at breakfast – teff, oatmeal, eggs, ham. Any of those are rife with the kind of nutrients your body needs to help you maintain a good level of concentration, energy and health. The kind of breakfast that keeps me going all day is actually not your typical breakfast food at all. It’s dinner. Last night’s dinner, actually.
This polenta recipe was originally destined to be dinner (and it was). It made a fabulous breakfast the next morning, too. If you don’t want to go that far, and you need a little sweetness after a long night of fasting, feel free to add a little brown sugar to the polenta and leave out the tomato sauce. Actually, the tomato sauce I made was born out of necessity. I had about seven tomatoes from my garden sitting on the counter. Some of them had started to rot, and I didn’t want to just toss them. I sliced them into quarters, spread them on a baking sheet and baked them in a 325°F oven for about a half hour. Then, I added a couple of roasted garlic cloves to them. With my hand-held blender, I puréed them, then pressed them through a sieve. I seasoned them with a little salt and pepper, and voilà, instant, fresh sauce. To be perfectly honest, I’m not entirely sure if polenta qualifies as a complex carb; but after eating a breakfast like this, that full feeling does last right through to lunchtime.
Switch up this dish any way you’d like with any of your own favourite additions: sliced almonds, yogurt, fruit or even green onions!
Polenta with Poached Eggs
6 cups lightly salted water
1 cup fine cornmeal
1 cup tomato sauce (optional)
2 poached eggs
1. Bring salted water to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and add cornmeal in a steady stream, stirring constantly with a whisk. Once the cornmeal has been incorporated in the water, switch to a wooden spoon and stir fairly constantly for about 20 minutes, until polenta is thick and creamy. Remove from heat, add butter and parmesan, if using. If not, omit the cheese and add brown sugar.
2. Heat tomato sauce, if using.
3. Poach eggs.
4. Spoon polenta into a wide bowl. Spread tomato sauce on top. Lay eggs on top of tomato sauce. Season with salt and pepper.