Mushroom and Herb Polenta

Gather stone-ground yellow grits or polenta from the Tuesday market and mushrooms from the Saturday market to create this delightful Mushroom and Herb Polenta recipe. The extra polenta can be made into polenta cakes by spreading it out in a shallow pan and allowing it to cool overnight. Next morning, cut it into pieces, and lightly fry in olive oil or butter. Tasty!


  • 4 cups of mushrooms, very roughly chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 Tbsp chopped thyme
  • ½ cup stone-ground yellow grits or polenta
  • 3 oz feta, crumbled
  • 2 ½ Tbsp of butter
  • 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 4 oz brie, mozzarella, or other creamy, melting cheese, cut into thin slices
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • ⅓ cup vermouth or dry white wine
  • salt and cracked black pepper
  • 2 ¼ cups vegetable stock


Heat half the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add half the mushrooms, in a single layer and fry for a few minutes, or until just cooked; try not to move them much so they brown. Remove from the pan, and repeat with the rest of the mushrooms and oil. Add all of the mushrooms to the pan and add vermouth, scraping the bottom of the pan. Once all the liquid has evaporated turn off the heat, and add the garlic, thyme and some salt and pepper. Keep warm.

Bring the stock to boil in a saucepan. Slowly stir in the polenta then reduce the heat to the minimum and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. The polenta is ready when it leaves the sides of the pan but is still runny. This will take between 40-50 minutes. Add stock or water if it seems to dry out but just enough to keep the consistency like a thick porridge.

Preheat the broiler. When the polenta is ready, stir in the feta, butter and rosemary. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the polenta over a heatproof dish and top with melting cheese slices. Place under the broiler for a minute to brown the cheese a bit and warm everything.

Tip: Extra polenta can be made into polenta cakes by spreading it in a shallow pan, allowing to cool overnight, cutting it into pieces, and lightly frying in olive oil or butter.

Serves 2-3

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Market Umbrella


Market Umbrella is an independent nonprofit 501(c)(3), based in New Orleans, whose mission is to cultivate the field of public markets for public good. Market Umbrella has operated the Crescent City Farmers Markets (CCFM) since 1995.

Crescent City Farmers Market


The Crescent City Farmers Market operates weekly year-round in four New Orleans neighborhoods. The CCFM hosts nearly 80 local small farmers, fishers and food producers, and more than 100,000 shoppers annually.