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Photo: Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

Russ Parsons is the food editor at The Los Angeles Times.  He likes to make polenta in the oven.  Traditionally, polenta is made by stirring frequently over a stovetop.  Instead, Russ bakes his polenta.  His favorite variety of polenta is Golden Pheasant.

Perfect Baked Polenta
Servings: 6 

8 cups water
1 tsp salt=
2 cups polenta=
2 to 3 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano 

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a 3- to 4-quart oven-proof pot, combine the water, salt, polenta and butter. Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Stir polenta and bake for 10 more minutes. Remove the pot from the oven and stir in the grated cheese. Set aside 5 minutes to rest before serving.

2. To serve, spoon the polenta into each of 6 warmed shallow pasta bowls. Serve immediately.