Polenta with Chunky Tomato Sauce and Pecorino Romano

Polenta with Chunky Tomato Sauce and Pecorino Romano

Polenta is a thick cooked mixture made with cornmeal and a liquid (water, broth, or milk). When chilled, polenta solidifies and can be cut into shapes and grilled or sautéed. Polenta may be prepared ahead, covered, and refrigerated overnight.

Cooking Light AUGUST 2005

  • Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 2 polenta rounds and 1/2 cup tomato sauce)


  • Polenta:
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked instant cornmeal
  • 6 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated pecorino Romano cheese
  • Cooking spray
  • Tomato sauce:
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped tomato (about 2 large)
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced shallots (about 1 large or 2 small shallots)
  • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil (about 12 leaves)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh marjoram or oregano
  • 1 teaspoon extravirgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) shaved pecorino Romano cheese


To prepare polenta, place cornmeal in a large saucepan. Gradually add water and 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring constantly with a whisk. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in grated cheese. Spoon polenta into a 13 x 9-inch pan coated with cooking spray, spreading evenly. Press plastic wrap onto surface of polenta; chill 2 hours or until firm.

To prepare sauce, combine tomato and next 6 ingredients (through pepper) in a medium bowl; set aside.

Prepare grill.

Cut polenta into rounds using a 2 1/2-inch cookie cutter; coat both sides of rounds evenly with cooking spray. Grill polenta 5 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Serve with tomato sauce, and sprinkle with shaved cheese. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 251
  • Calories from fat: 24%
  • Fat: 6.7g
  • Saturated fat: 2.4g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 2.4g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 1g
  • Protein: 9g
  • Carbohydrate: 40.4g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Cholesterol: 14mg
  • Iron: 1.1mg
  • Sodium: 549mg
  • Calcium: 154mg

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Polenta with Chunky Tomato Sauce and Pecorino Romano recipe