Polenta with Kale, Beans and Sausage

Polenta with Kale, Beans and Sausage

Serves 6

This substantial porridge will take the edge off an early winter chill. If using dried beans, substitute with Calypso for a tasty and visually pleasing companion to the lacinato kale.

Ingredients: 
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • Salt, to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 4 sage leaves
  • 1 (2-inch) sprig rosemary
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
  • Cheesecloth and kitchen twine
  • 2 cups lacinato (black or dinosaur) kale, large stems removed, leaves chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup coarse yellow polenta
  • 1 1/2 cup fine yellow polenta
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 10 ounces sweet or spicy Italian turkey sausage, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 cup cooked cannellini beans
  • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
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Method: 

In a large pot, bring broth, 4 cups water and salt to a boil. Meanwhile, wrap garlic, sage, rosemary, bay leaf and chile flakes in the cheesecloth and tie with twine to make a pouch. Reduce the heat to low, add herb pouch and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove and discard pouch, then add kale and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain kale, return liquid to the pot and return to a simmer. Set kale aside. In a medium bowl, mix the two types of polenta together. With the broth mixture at a simmer, pour polenta into the pot in a slow, steady stream while stirring with a wooden spoon. Keeping the heat very low, stir slowly every few minutes for about 40 minutes. If some lumps form, press them against the side of the pot to dissolve them. Polenta should be thick and creamy.

While polenta is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and cook until golden brown all over. Drain and reserve.

To finish polenta, turn off the heat, cover pot and let rest, without stirring, for 10 minutes. Remove lid and stir polenta, scraping the sides of the pot with the wooden spoon. Add reserved kale, beans, 1/4 cup of the cheese, 1/2 cup of the parsley and remaining 2 tablespoons oil and stir gently to incorporate all the ingredients. Cook for another 2 minutes at a simmer, continuing to stir.

To serve, top polenta with sausage and sprinkle with remaining cheese and parsley.

Nutritional Info: 
Per Serving:580 calories (170 from fat), 19g total fat, 3.5g saturated fat, 40mg cholesterol, 1230mg sodium, 79g carbohydrate (10g dietary fiber, 4g sugar), 24g protein
Special Diets: 

Note: We've provided special diet and nutritional information for educational purposes. But remember — we're cooks, not doctors! You should follow the advice of your health-care provider. And since product formulations change, check product labels for the most recent ingredient information. See our Terms of Service.

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