Meanwhile start cooking the polenta, and for this you have to boil the water in a castiron or nonstick pot and add the salt. When the water begins to simmer, add slowly the cornmeal, whisking energetically to avoid lumps. The polenta will start thickening fairly quickly. You will have to keep whisking or stirring fairly often or it will form a crust which is not an issue. Stir in the butter if you choose to use it and even some shredded cheese if you dare until all melted and well incorporated.
To paste the garlic I’m using a Mortar and pestle (I am using this mortar).
If you prefer your polenta to be denser, pour it into a dish, let it cool slightly for 10-15 mins and then cut/serve into chunks.
But for a softer one which is my all time favourite, you will need to serve it scooped out immediately before it has hardened and top it up with these beautiful sardine fillets perfectly panfried and a beautiful garlic sauce.
It can be a little tricky with the polenta to get it to the right texture and this is because it really depends on the cornflour/cornmeal as some ‘swallow' more water than others. You can always juggle with the water or the cornflour amounts.
Don't panic! If you want it in a denser texture add more flour, and if it turned out denser than your liking then add some more boiling water (from a kettle) till you get it the right texture. It is all a learning process don’t worry I don’t always get it right every time after making it for so many years but I happily juggle with either water or the flour till’s perfecto! 😉
Of course my suggestion would be if you do not like the garlic sauce then feel free to sprinkle with an indulgent amount of grated or shaved Parmesan cheese or any other cheese that you would like such a nice mature cheddar. I tell you what.... I LOVE it with feta cheese too. A lot ;-)
Oh, I feel like dancing with joy already and yes I might need to hit the gym after so much cheese but... who cares, I’ll do whatever but cut corners/cheese amounts on this dish. No wayyyy!! ;-))
Enjoy this delicious dish with a nice seabass fillet instead of sardines or whatever fish you prefer! Make it nice and crisp and it will be heaven.😉