Need another great one dish meal to add to your repertoire, this is it. The dumplings are really the star of this show – ultimate comfort food. You could put them on anything, like stew, chili, etc., and you’d have an amazing meal. I think the grind of the cornmeal makes a big difference – get coarse grind, for the crunch. In a regular grocery store, you can usually find Goya brand (coarse grind) cornmeal in the Mexican section.
Chorizo with Polenta Dumplings
- 2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb fresh chorizo sausage (loose, or out of their skins) or Italian sausage
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced or 1 tsp onion powder
- 2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 3 cups loosely baby spinach, baby kale, or chopped swiss chard
- 1 lb cooked chicken, chunked or shredded
- Salt and pepper
- 3/4 cup polenta (not instant) or coarsely ground cornmeal
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 cup grated Manchego (or Parmesan) cheese
- 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
- Heat the oil in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chorizo. Cook until partially browned, breaking it into pieces. Remove all but 3 TBSP of grease.
- Add the onion to the skillet and cook, until somewhat softened, stir occasionally . Stir in pepper strips and cook about 5 more minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl whisk together 1/4 cup flour and the tomato paste. Slowly whisk in the chicken broth until well combined. Stir into meat and veggies in skillet. Stir in the spinach and cook until the mixture is slightly thickened. Stir in chicken pieces.
- Remove from the heat and adjust the seasoning, if needed.
- Heat the oven to 375.
- Using a food processor, combine flour, polenta, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. You can make these by hand, like biscuits, but I prefer the processor.
- Place butter pieces on top of flour mixture, and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add the Manchego, and pulse a couple times.
- Pour in cream, and pulse until a rough dough forms.
- Drop 7 – 9 large mounds of polenta over the sausage mixture, 1/2 inch apart. Bake until the filling is bubbly and the polenta topping is golden brown, about 25 minutes.
- The variations on the filling are endless. If you have shredded pork, use it; if you have Italian sausage use it, with Parmesan in the dumplings. Make your favorite stew or chili, top it with the dumplings and bake it. Make it totally vegetarian, and add mushrooms and a little soy sauce or tamari for a more robust flavor.