Gone are the days that having a portion of chips meant being restricted to potatoes. Ok, we all love spuds, but now there are many more options! From sweet potato to portabello mushroom fries to aubergine, yucca and chickpea fries we don’t have to stick to regular potatoes if we are feeling a bit more adventurous.
An Italian storecupboard staple, polenta has its roots in the peasant cuisine of northern Italy. Polenta can be cooked to be creamy and thick, or it can be set and cut into slices. It is enjoyed as an alternative to pasta, rice or potatoes. You can even buy ready-made polenta in tubes or blocks – this just needs to be sliced and heated. Its ability to be set and sliced makes it the perfect alternative to potato fries.
This simple recipe only calls for herbs as additional flavouring, however, you can really make this your own by adding extras such as cheese, spices or other favourite seasonings! Serve these crunchy little numbers with your choice of condiments. I recommend ketchup, mayo or pesto!
- 250g pre-cooked polenta
- 1L Water
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place a saucepan with vegetable stock on the stove and put on to boil. Pour in the polenta and the herbs while stirring constantly with a whisk.
- As it thickens, lower the heat and continue to cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for about 5-10 minutes or until the polenta has reached a purée like consistency, then turn off the heat.
- Prepare your loaf tin. Place a sheet of baking paper on the inside before pouring in the polenta while still hot.
- Smooth the surface with a rolling pin or similar.
- Cover the pan with with a sheet of baking paper.
- Let it cool for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator. Then preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Remove the loaf pan from the fridge and turn out the polenta block on a cutting board.
- With a sharp knife cut the polenta to the desired shape (chunky or skinny, it’s your choice!)
- Place a baking paper sheet on a baking try and pop your fries on the tray.
- Bake for at least 20 minutes or until golden crispy, turning half way through.
Make sure to enjoy them whilst they are hot and crispy.