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Polenta with Pancetta and Sage

Monica Buck
Yield MAKES: About 4 1/2 cups; 4 to 6 servings
NOTES: Pancetta is available in many supermarkets and at Italian groceries. Garnish the polenta with sprigs of fresh sage or with fried sage leaves.


  • 1/2 cup chopped pancetta (3 oz.) or bacon
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1 cup polenta
  • Salt and fresh-ground pepper

Nutrition Information

  • calories 252
  • caloriesfromfat 33 %
  • protein 5.2 g
  • fat 9.2 g
  • satfat 3.1 g
  • carbohydrate 36 g
  • fiber 4.7 g
  • sodium 97 mg
  • cholesterol 9.5 mg

How to Make It

  1. In a 2 1/2- to 3-quart pan over medium-high heat, stir pancetta in olive oil until crisp and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer half the pancetta to paper towels to drain.

  2. Add chopped sage to pan and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add 5 cups water and bring to a boil.

  3. Following steps 2 and 3 of basic polenta recipe, add polenta (omit salt in step 2) and cook until tender to bite. Add salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste (omit butter).

  4. Ladle polenta into bowls and top with reserved pancetta.