A crispy, cheesy kind of fries

Date

Izy Hossack

Baked rosemary polenta chips

Baked rosemary polenta chips Photo: Top with Cinnamon by Izy Hossack

Polenta chips are for the times when you want to make oven fries but don't have any potatoes. They aren't a replacement for potatoes; don't worry friends, I'm not trying to remove the beloved chip from your life.

They are, however, much more exciting in terms of texture and flavour potential. Take a regular fry: what can you do? You can season it with spices or herbs. That's about it.

Take a polenta chip, however, and you have access to the actual 'meat' so to speak, of the chip. You can mix different cheeses or purées into the polenta while you cook it (sweet potato polenta is major) and also get whatever herbs or spices you want in there.

You then get the opportunity to season the outer layer, too. Double flavour layers call for double exclamation marks!! I've gone and put garlic, ricotta and Parmesan IN the polenta, and then rosemary and truffle salt ON it.

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What results is the perfect harmony of mega flavour and cheesy, soft centre encased by a crisp outer layer. 

INGREDIENTS

125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) milk

1 clove of garlic, peeled and minced

160 g (5½ oz/1 cup) dry polenta

1 tbsp unsalted butter

100 g (3½ oz/½ cup) ricotta

2 tbsp grated Parmesan

a large pinch of salt

1 tsp dried rosemary

a large pinch of truffle salt or regular salt

1 tbsp vegetable oil


METHOD

In a large pan bring 500 ml (17 fl oz/ 2 cups) water, the milk and the garlic to the boil over a medium heat. Gradually add the polenta, while stirring, until thickened (it can take anywhere between 5 and 15 minutes).

Then stir in the butter, ricotta, Parmesan and salt.

Spread the mixture on a foil-lined baking tray in a layer roughly 1 cm (1½ in) thick. Sprinkle with the rosemary and salt, pressing it gently into the surface with your hands. Chill until set, roughly 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/Gas 6). Once set, cut the polenta into 1 cm (1½ in) wide strips.

Grease the lined baking tray with a little oil and then spread the polenta chips on top. Drizzle or spray the chips with oil too, and bake for 20–30 minutes, until golden brown, flipping them over halfway through the baking time.