The Italian mamma is well known all over the world and you might already know why.
The reason is simple: she is such a terrific cook!! Italian grown up children (like myself!) could not possibly detach from their mamma as the idea of an amazing meal waiting for you works like a magnet in luring you back home.
Italians are food obsessed, since childhood everything revolves around food. Italian children begin eating grown up food as soon as they start having solids: pasta, risotto, fresh fish, juicy steaks, fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables, fine patisserie..etc are everyday food so their taste buds develop a taste for good food early on which will last a lifetime.
My mum certainly is a good cook and I always look forward to her rustic and tasty meals. My dad grows polenta in his field which tastes just amazing. Polenta is not the “semolina like” stuff you buy in shops, which is often pre-cooked. Real polenta is more of a rustic, full bodied and wholesome food in which you can taste the goodness of the corn. Polenta needs to cook for about 45 minutes so there is, unfortunately, no quick way to get proper polenta.
I thought I could share a few shots of our lunch today. Here you can see polenta being made.
To make it you need to cook corn meal with water and salt for 45 minutes to an hour whilst stirring all the time. A long wooden spoon is ideal for stirring.
When it is cooked you will need to pour it into a wet bowl and let it cool down for a few minutes
Now place the bowl upside down and shake out the polenta onto a flat dish. The polenta will have taken on the shape of the bowl and this will make it easy to slice.
Polenta is like potatoes and bread and needs to be enjoyed with something else, like meat, fish or cheese. We had mackerel and a bowl of radicchio with it. A very yummy and rustic meal indeed! Viva la mamma! 🙂