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Italians enjoy cornmeal or polenta in countless preparations. Polentina is a creamier, porridge-like version, often served for breakfast. An orange-infused dollop of tangy mascarpone cheese and yogurt is a rich, delicious topping. But feel free to skip the mascarpone and double the yogurt to save calories. To keep it quick, we use instant polenta or regular fine cornmeal. If you have time, the recipe will work with stone-ground cornmeal. It will take longer to cook, 15 to 20 minutes, but will reward you with rich texture.

Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 2010


Recipe Summary test

20 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Zest the orange to get 1 1/2 teaspoons; set the zest aside. Remove the rest of the peel and white pith with a sharp knife. Working over a bowl, cut the segments from their surrounding membranes. Set aside for garnish.

  • Combine water, milk and salt in a large heavy saucepan and bring to a boil. Gradually whisk in polenta (or cornmeal) and return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low to maintain an even bubble and whisk until the polentina thickens, 1 to 5 minutes (depending on what type you're using). Remove from the heat, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, combine mascarpone, yogurt, 1 tablespoon honey and 1/2 teaspoon of the orange zest in a small bowl.

  • Whisk the remaining 3 tablespoons honey and the remaining 1 teaspoon zest into the polentina. Divide among 4 bowls and top with a dollop of the mascarpone topping. Garnish with the reserved orange segments and sprinkle with tarragon, if desired. Serve immediately.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the topping (Step 3) for up to 2 days.

Nutrition Facts

about 3/4 cup
350 calories; protein 8.9g; carbohydrates 50.3g; dietary fiber 3.8g; sugars 25.4g; fat 13.9g; saturated fat 7.6g; cholesterol 39.6mg; vitamin a iu 653IU; vitamin c 17.5mg; folate 14.8mcg; calcium 181.8mg; iron 0.2mg; magnesium 14.9mg; potassium 208.7mg; sodium 210.3mg; thiamin 0.1mg; added sugar 17g.

1 1/2 starch, 1/2 low fat milk, 1 1/2 other carbohydrate, 2 fat