Friday, December 10, 2010

Creamy Bacon and Mushroom Polenta

All of your wonderful submissions for our bacon marmalade contest have been lip linkingly good! We were so  excited about doing our first contest / giveaway that we wound up doing our own entry on Tuesday night! We put together a creamy bacon and mushroom polenta that definitely rocked the polenta world. We pushed off posting this just in case anyone came up with the same idea, and if you did, then you might just win! So far I haven't seen it done yet, but theres still time left as we write this! Fall is coming to a very wintery finish here in the Bay Area and the Christmas season has gotten into full swing. Christmas stuff everywhere? Check. Certain closets / drawers / rooms people are not allowed to look in? Check. A front yard thats so bright it can be seen from space? Double Check. It also means nearly everything we cook is hearty and warm and goes well with cuddling by the fire. A huge dish of polenta that smells like bacon fits that description! If you've never had polenta, this is really a good starter for you. It's creamy and full of familiar flavors but carries that unique soup like texture that makes polenta... well... polenta. Definitely something to serve with a side of family!

Speaking of family, we wanted to make mention over the next week or so of a charity that Eric has been a huge fan of and contributer too. The charity is called Child's Play and is organized to provide toys and games to children's hospitals around the world. They are partnered with over 70 different hospitals and staffed entirely by volunteers during the holiday season, so every dime donated goes straight to help make long hospital stays for children with life threatening illnesses a little easier. We know that everyone is stretched to their limits these days but anything that you can donate really does make a difference. You can donate directly to a chosen hospital (see the website for the worldwide map of partnered hospitals) or simply donate via paypal or the tech friendly out there can text GAMERS to 50555 to donate $5.00 (its added to your cell phone bill). Check the website for the TaxID and other donation deduction help!

Creamy Bacon and Mushroom Polenta 
What You Will Need

2 Tbs Bourbon Bacon Marmalade (or about 6 strips of bacon)
1/2 onion (minced)
6 cups chicken broth
1 cup polenta
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp heavy cream
2 cups mushrooms (thinly sliced)
1 Tbs thyme (minced)
Salt & pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese

In a large skillet, cook the onions in a bit of olive oil or butter until soft. Stir in the Bourbon Bacon Marmalade and broth. Bring to a boil adding the polenta then lower heat to medium and cook whisking occasionally until the polenta is thick and creamy, about 15-20 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. 

While the polenta is cooking, heat the oil in a skillet and brown mushrooms. Toss in the thyme and whisk in the cream. Cook until thicken slightly. 

Serve polenta hot and top with a spoonful of mushrooms and freshly grated parmesan cheese. 


  1. This meal reminds me of my childhood....great photos:)

  2. I have never cooked polenta. If you are saying it is a beginner's dish, I will definitely try ! I guess I will stick with just bacon, because I have no idea where I can find the bacon marmalade!

  3. I heart polenta. I heart bacon. I heart mushrooms. Need I say more?

  4. I've never cooked polenta either but i'll definitely get around it to sometime. The final product turned out so great and the photography is beautiful. thanks for sharing!

  5. This looks amazing. the bacon marmalade is killing me.

  6. Wow, this is gorgeous. Warm and comforting, most definitely. Like a fluffy duvet, albeit with bacon. Mmmm.

  7. This is a giant, delicious bowl full of comfort! I can't think of anything better right now.

  8. Wow, this polenta sounds absolutely incredible with this Bourbon Bacon Marmalade, and wonderful with the earthy mushroom flavors too! Very nice!

  9. I think this is the most delicious soundnig polenta ever!!!!

  10. I am always looking for new polenta recipes and boy did this catch my eye...sounds amazing!