Crispy Pancetta Polenta recipe is a delicious side dish and is perfect to serve with meat and stews. It's incredibly hearty, packed with flavor and it's comforting beyond belief!
Scented with rosemary and made with Dubliner cheese, Cripsy Pancetta Polenta is absolutely as delicious as it sounds.
I'm not kidding around here, it's amazing!
What is polenta?
- Polenta is made from ground cornmeal (usually coarse).
- It is an inexpensive, common staple in Italy.
- A Northern Italian dish, polenta can be extremely versatile, made into sweet or savory dishes.
- The classic preparation only uses water or stock, butter, salt, and pepper.
- Polenta is very similar to southern grits, but is typically made with a less starchy (flint) corn from Italy, making it a bit less creamy than grits which uses dent corn.
Between the warmth of the fresh rosemary and the sweet, nutty Dubliner cheese I used, the flavor profile in this creamy mixture is out of control -- add to that the crispy, salty pancetta, and you might just fall off your chair.
What's in this recipe?
- chicken stock
- coarse cornmeal
- half and half
- Dubliner cheese
- olive oil, salt
How to make Crispy Pancetta
- Add thickly cut, diced pancetta to a satué pan with a bit of oil and a finely chopped rosemary.
- Cook, stirring every so often, until it's golden and crispy. This only takes a few minutes.
This crispy pancetta is also fabulous added to salads!
And how lovely is this cheese marker? You can find them here.
Can you use another cheese?
Use your favorite cheese if you prefer. I think Gruyère would also be a lovely choice.
What to serve with Crispy Pancetta Polenta
- Braised Brisket Stew
- Pumpkin Braised Short Ribs
- Stove-Top Spiced Meatball Stew
- Lemon Herb Chicken Under a Brick
A couple more polenta recipes:
This is not a sponsored post. Kerrygold Dubliner is one of my favorite cheeses.
Rosemary Polenta with Crispy Pancetta
- 5 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped, divided
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1¾ cups polenta (coarse cornmeal)
- olive oil for the pan
- 1 cup thick cut pancetta, cut into a small dice
- 1 cup half and half
- 1 cup Dubliner cheese, grated
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- In a medium to large saucepan, add the 1½ tablespoons of the rosemary and the salt to the stock, and bring to a boil.
- Gradually whisk in the polenta. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the mixture thickens and the cornmeal is tender, stirring often, about 20 minutes.
- While the polenta is cooking, very lightly coat the bottom of a small sauté pan with olive oil. Add the pancetta and remaining rosemary, and place the pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring every so often, until it's golden and crispy, about 4 minutes. Set aside.
- When the polenta is ready, turn off the heat and add the half and half, cheese, and butter. Stir to blend.
- Serve with a generous spoonful of the pancetta on top of each portion.
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I've been working on playing with polenta recently and this looks fantastic and have to give it a go.
This is one of my favorite ways to prepare it -- hope you love it! 🙂
What great photos and it looks amazing and sounds so full of flavor! I love cooking with pancetta.
Thanks so much, Shelby! 🙂
Charla @ That Girl Cooks Healthy
Wow! you make polenta looks so darn tasty, I'm drooling over here. Beautiful pictures too btw.
Thank you Charla! It is so tasty. 🙂
Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious
Why thank you! 🙂
All of these flavours are ones I love so I know I'll love trying this! Looks gorgeous 😀
Thanks so much!
Your lush recipe has me rethinking my usual polenta as a side dish! I'm dreaming of making enough for leftovers. My lunch would be fabulous!
Hope you try this one, Deb. We had it as a main course the other night. 🙂
Manju | Cooking Curries
I love how creamy that looks and I am a sucker for polenta!
Thanks so much. Hope you try it! 🙂
Oh, Wow! This is right down our comfort food alley! I think I will make this during the week - I have all the ingredients (although my cheddar is from Shelburne Farms). Ready to go! xo (I will report back. ?)
Oh it will be superb with that cheese! Enjoy! xo
Dubliner is nice. Sharp enough to scream "look at me", but not a silly cheese in anyway. GREG
Love you description of Dubliner. Perfect. 🙂
Yum -- I love polenta, and this sounds delicious! I love the rosemary and pancetta additions. Can't wait to try this!
Hope you do! 🙂
These flavors sound so good! I have to make this asap! Cannot wait!
Yes, I love these flavors. I do hope you try it. 🙂
I love Polenta! It's such a great substitute for grits! This recipe looks so creamy and delicious! Plus, I do LOVE that cheese marker! Genius!
Thank you Shanika! Cool marker, right!? 🙂
This polenta looks so delicious and comforting! Can't wait to try this recipe!
John / Kitchen Riffs
I really, really like polenta. Rosemary plays SO well with it, but I haven't tried pancetta. I will, though. 🙂
Thanks, John. I hope you try and love it! 🙂 ~Valentina
We love polenta very much and this is on our list definitely dear. Thank you for this inviting idea 🙂
Thank you! 🙂 ~Valentina
Dawn - Girl Heart Food
A big bowl of this and I'm set..nothing else required! This looks super good, Valentina. With the cheese, creamy polenta and pancetta, what's not to love?? Can't wait to try 🙂
Thank you! I agree, what's not to love? 🙂 ~Valentina
David @ Spiced
I absolutely love Dubliner cheese! (Oh, who am I kidding? I love all cheese!) Taking polenta and adding Dubliner plus crispy pancetta sounds like my definition of the perfect comfort food! It's brutally cold here right now, and some delicious comfort food like this would be quite welcome. 🙂
I hope it warms you and the family. Bundle up. Thank you, David! 🙂 ~Valentina