Jalapeno Cheddar Polenta Gnocchi

We have a ton of cornmeal here because I always think we don't have any and buy it fresh when I am working on new recipes. So of course I have been brainstorming new ideas for using up the cornmeal. I had the idea to make some sort of gnocchi with it, and when I did some research I realized that polenta gnocchi was already a thing. I wrote a list of all the things we had plenty of in the fridge, and broccoli, bacon, and jalapeno were calling to me for this recipe. It came out really delicious! It's definitely a comfort dish, its pretty heavy and filling, but all the flavors came together perfectly!
After cooking the polenta and adding some cheddar it looks nice and doughy. Flatten it out and let it cool. Then cut it into cubes. Fry them up in the leftover bacon fat. The broccoli is next, and then butter after the broccoli gets some color. Add the bacon and polenta back in and toss once or twice to coat, then serve! Tasty stuff! The gnocchi had an awesome texture of crispy on the outside and tender in the middle, and they tasted so cheesy!

Jalapeno Cheddar Polenta Gnocchi

For:  2 people

  • 2 Jalapenos diced and seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • 1 1/2 cups Stock
  • 1/2 cup Milk
  • 1/2 cup fine cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 slices Bacon chopped
  • 1 head Broccoli cut into florets
  • 1 tablespoon Butter

Instructions

  1. Cook the jalapenos in the butter for a few minutes until softened. Add in the stock and milk and bring to a simmer.
  2. Whisk in the cornmeal and turn heat to low. Cook stirring often for about a half hour until thick and tender. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese.
  3. Spread the polenta on a piece of parchment paper, about 1 inch thick. Cover with another piece and allow to cool a few hours or overnight.
  4. After it has cooled, flip it out to a cutting board and cut into 1 inch cubes.
  5. Cook the bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove from pan. Wipe out excess bacon fat but leave some in the pan. Turn heat to high and add about a third of the polenta cubes.
  6. Gently flip the polenta after browned on the first side. Brown on both sides and remove to a paper towel. Repeat with the rest of the polenta.
  7. Add the broccoli to the pan and cook on high to slightly char. After it is charred on both sides, turn heat to low and add the butter. Stir to coat. Add the polenta cubes back in as well as the bacon. Toss to coat and serve.