Fried cornmeal with parsley

Fried cornmeal with parsley

Milho frito

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Serves
4
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Milho frito, a kind of crispy cornmeal cake that is a little bit like polenta, is originally from Madeira, but is enjoyed throughout Lisbon. It’s simple to make and can be eaten as a snack on its own or as a side dish; it would be nice with the beef skewers with chouriço and bay leaves. It is incredibly versatile and stores well, so you can make a large batch of the batter and cut it into squares once it’s set, then chill or freeze them until you’re ready to fry.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon pork fat
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely crushed
180ml vegetable or chicken stock
30g butter
180g fine cornmeal or polenta
A large bunch parsley, leaves finely chopped
lemon wedges, to serve
Garlic and turnip green rice with piri piri oil, Piri piri oil, to serve
fine sea salt
ground white pepper

Method

  1. Heat the pork fat and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a pan over a low heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Pour in the stock, add the butter and bring to the boil. Pour the cornmeal into another pan and, whisking constantly, pour the liquid over the cornmeal in a continuous stream. Bring to the boil and cook gently for 4–5 minutes, or until it thickens. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in most of the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Pour into a lightly oiled baking tray and leave it to set until firm. Cut into squares.
  2. Heat the remaining olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the squares in batches for 2–3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Serve warm, scattered with the remaining parsley if you like, with lemon wedges and piri piri oil on the side.
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