Panfried Polenta Squares with Toasted Corn, Cherry Tomatoes, & Chèvre

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh corn kernels
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup coarse cornmeal
  • 1 Tbsp roasted kabocha squash seed oil (optional)
  • 4 oz chèvre at room temperature
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • Large handful of baby arugula
  • Flaky sea salt, for finishing

Add olive oil to hot skillet.  Toast corn kernels in the oil, stirring, until golden.  Set aside.  Place water and salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.  Pour in cornmeal, whisking constantly.  Reduce heat to medium-low when polenta begins to bubble.  Keep stirring for 10-15 minutes until thickened.  Whisk in the kobocha seed oil, if using, and corn kernels.  Continue cooking and stirring until polenta pulls away from the sides of the pot, about 4 minutes more.  Spread evenly in an oiled 9×11” baking dish, cool until firm.  Cut into 3” squares and pan fry in batches in a medium hot skillet with olive oil (or more kobocha seed oil) until golden brown on both sides.  Top each square with a spoonful of chèvre, a couple of tomato pieces, a sprinkle of flaky sea salt and a few grinds of black pepper.  Serve on a bed of arugula.