Sometimes no matter how well-intentioned I am about planning 2 or 3 weeknight meals (and even buying all the ingredients), the unpredictability of life and the spontaneity of my husband (which is usually way more fun than my obsessive planning, trust me) can completely foil my best efforts. Often by Friday, I’m left with a fridge full of slimy herbs and questionable chicken breasts. And anyway, who wants to cook a meal on Friday night? Certainly not me.
On the nights I am actually able to pull off a nice meal, salmon-topped polenta has become a regular favorite. I usually have all the ingredients I need on hand, except for the salmon, which I can easily pick up on the way home.
Place filets, skin side down, on a foil-lined baking pan.
Brush with olive oil, and squeeze lemon juice on top (I like to arrange thin lemon slices too).
Broil about 10 minutes, or to desired done-ness (depending on the thickness of the filets).
Parmesan Polenta (adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe)
4 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
1 cup yellow polenta, preferably stone-ground
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
¼ cup half and half
2 tablespoons (¼ stick) unsalted butter
Place the chicken stock in a large saucepan. Add the garlic and cook over medium-high heat until the stock comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and very slowly whisk in the polenta, whisking constantly to make sure there are no lumps. Switch to a wooden spoon, add the salt and pepper, and simmer, stirring almost constantly, for 10 minutes, until thick. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan thoroughly while you’re stirring. Off the heat, stir in the Parmesan, half and half, and butter. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve salmon filets on top of the polenta.
Is weeknight meal planning always on schedule in your house?
(ps – how AMAZING is this polenta party?)