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Northern Italian Cooking Workshop at Venture Cafe

The bread of the poor, polenta

When it comes to Italy, it seems that only pasta and pizza are the cornerstones of Italian cuisine. There is a staple food of Northern Italy that doesn’t usually get much recognition, but is to be considered the third part of the Italian food, humble, versatile and satisfying polenta.

Presently known almost throughout the Italian territory, in the past it was the staple food in mountain areas of Lombardy, Veneto, Piedmont, Valle d'Aosta, Trentino, Emilia Romagna, Tuscany, Marche and Friuli-Venezia Giulia.

To make polenta, all you need is a minimum of three ingredients; cornmeal, water and salt – that is what makes it such a budget-friendly dish. At the workshop, we boiled the cornmeal and chilled in the fridge for at least two hours and then gave round shapes as a cake and fried them on the pan for 3-4 minutes only. We roasted some cherry tomatoes with a balsamic vinegar sauce and topped the polenta cakes with some roasted cherry tomatoes and marinated shallots.


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