Polenta w/ asparagus in chipotle gravy

by KalaLea on March 25, 2011 • Posted in Recipes

Recipe by KalaLea K

Serves 3-4 hard-headed hippies

Cooking I love, recipe writing is torture. To all of the cookbook writers, I salute you! I have perhaps 10 more recipes in me but then something has to give. It feels so un-natural because cooking, for me, is whimsical and unpredictable. I urge you to experiment with these recipes, try new spices, use your head, listen to your gut & most importantly Have Fun!

One huge lesson I learned years ago is: you can always add but rarely subtract. Start with a pinch, taste then add little by little until your mouth says WOW!

This recipe is not as complicated as it may seem. Turn on music, take your time and read below.

You will need:

1 pack of packaged pre-cooked polenta (the package looks like a raw cookie dough tube)
1 small can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (look in ethnic food section)
1 tsp of adobo sauce
2-3 TBSP of tomato paste or a little tomato sauce
2-3 TBSP of olive oil
2 cups of cold water for chipotle gravy (maybe more)
2 TBSPs of whole wheat all purpose flour
1/2 of orange, red, or yellow chopped pepper strips (optional)
1-2 cloves of garlic
2 big squirts of organic ketchup
2 tsp of brown sugar or maple syrup

1/2 cup of water for asparagus
1/4 chopped green pepper (optional)
1 bunch of asparagus
1/2 juice of organic lemon (optional)

SPICES – use whatever you like but I think I added:
1. dried basil (2 TBSP)
2. ground thyme (1 tsp)
3. paprika(1 tsp)
4. salt (a pinch or three – take it slow)


image of steamer

1 medium to large pot or pan
colander or steamer basket
1 sauté pan
fire or electricity
optimism (not optional)


  • Chop or dice your onion
  • Peel and chop your garlic
  • Remove 1 chipotle pepper – chopped
  • Cut your cylinder of polenta in 1 in circles
  • Rinse and break off the ends of the asparagus – they naturally break when you bend
  • Make your gravy in small bowl – add flour to the 2 cups of cold water (stir slowly well)
  • Chop asparagus spears in half so that they are 2-3 inches long

POLENTA in CHIPOTLE GRAVY! In a sauce pan:
1.     Add a tad bit of oil to the pan

2.     Add the garlic, peppers, and any spices you wish

3.     Add the polenta circles to the pan and cook for 2-3 min on medium heat then flip over

4.     Removed the cooked polenta from the pan and set aside (on a plate)

5.     Add your flour water — keeping stirring until the mixture thickens – you don’t want clumps

6.     Add your chipotle pepper and sauce

7.     Add the tomato paste or tomato sauce

8.     Add ketchup, sugar, and salt to taste

STEAMED ASPARAGUS! In medium or large pot:
9. add water to large or medium pot and let it come to a boil (with steamer basket in place already)

10. add asparagus to steamer and cook for 3-4 minutes

12. plate dish then drizzle lemon juice over everything then serve and …


Serve with grilled chicken breast, broccoli, or your favorite cheese. Enjoy!

NOTE: Chipotle peppers are super spicy…you can always leave them out.

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