Polenta, taleggio and mushrooms

by Hayden Groves

An autumnal, Italian-inspired veggie recipe from Hayden Groves


For the polenta:
400ml whole milk
125g coarse polenta
40g butter
60g grated parmesan

For the mushrooms ragu:
300g mixed mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
Sprig of thyme
30g butter
80ml white wine
2 tbsp chopped parsley
120g taleggio, diced


Heat the milk with 400ml water and 1 tsp salt in a thick based pot, place it over a medium heat and watch it carefully, so you can catch it before it boils over. As the liquid comes up to the boil, slowly pour in the polenta with one hand and whisk it smoothly with the other. When it comes back up to the boil (careful here as it can erupt like Mount Vesuvius!), turn the heat down as low as it will go. Continue whisking at regular intervals during the early stages and as it thickens move to a wooden spoon. Cook for at least 30 mins. The polenta is ready when you can no longer feel a grainy texture on your tongue. Beat in the butter and parmesan and season heavily with more salt and pepper to taste. Cover your pan with a lid and reserve somewhere warm.

Sauté the mushrooms and garlic in 1 tbsp olive oil for 2 mins, then season with salt and pepper. Add the thyme and white wine, reduce the wine by half, then add the butter to emulsify. Test the seasoning and finish with the chopped parsley.

Give the polenta a good beat. Spoon onto a platter or divide between four warm bowls. Spoon over the mushroom ragu and dot with taleggio before giving everything a final drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Recipe: Hayden Groves