The perfect side dish for a cold winter night makes a delicious edible holiday gift.
Mix 2 cups uncooked polenta with 2 T finely diced sun-dried tomatoes, 4 t coarse salt, and 1 t dried rosemary, and transfer to a quart canning jar. Top with 4 oz. mixed dried mushrooms. Write recipe directions (below) on card and attach with string.
12 cups water
contents of gift jar
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan, optional
4 T butter, divided
salt and pepper to taste
1. In a small pan, bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add the dried mushrooms. Soak for 15-20 minutes, or until thoroughly softened.
2. In the meantime, bring 8 cups of water to a boil in a large pan. Reduce heat to medium-high and slowly stir in polenta. Whisk constantly for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan (if using), 2 T butter, salt, and pepper. Cover and set aside.
3. In a small sauté pan over medium high heat, add 2 T butter, the mushrooms strained from their liquid, and ¼ cup of the mushroom liquid. Season with salt and pepper, and sauté for about 5 minutes.
4. If polenta has thickened too much, add ¼ cup water and stir to thin. Reheat, ladle polenta into a serving bowl or individual bowls and top with mushrooms.