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Corn-Chive Polenta Cakes with Prosciutto

Corn-Chive Polenta Cakes with Prosciutto
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by in Oct 2006

Total Time: 60

Yield: 4 servings

These crispy corn cakes mimic griddle cakes with fried ham, but with a more complex flavor and a little more style.


  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels (substitute frozen or well-drained canned corn)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup canola oil, divided
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup coarse-grained cornmeal
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, plus extra for baking sheet
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped chives
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour


In a sauté pan over medium heat, cook corn in 2 tablespoons canola oil until just heated through, 2–3 minutes. Remove from heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large saucepan, bring water and stock to a low boil; then lower heat to a simmer and gradually add cornmeal in a slow, steady stream. Stir regularly over low heat with a wooden spoon until smooth, about 35 minutes.

Stir in butter, reserved corn, chives, and Parmesan; then season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread cornmeal mixture to a ¾-inch thickness in a greased baking pan and let set in the refrigerator until firm, at least 1 hour. When cornmeal mixture is set, cut into rounds with a cookie cutter or the rim of a clean glass to make eight rounds.

In a skillet, heat remaining 1/2 cup vegetable oil over high heat. Dip rounds into flour, brush off excess, and fry until crisp and golden brown, about 2–3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and keep warm.

Next, make the vinaigrette: In a medium-size bowl, whisk together mustard, lemon juice, honey, chives, and salt. Slowly drizzle in olive oil, whisking continuously, until it emulsifies.
Toss salad greens with vinaigrette. Divide among four plates. Place two cakes on each plate and top with prosciutto.

Serve warm.

Dijon Vinaigrette


  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon minced chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 cups mixed salad greens
  • 4 ounces (about 8 thin slices) prosciutto, cut lengthwise into strips


Updated Tuesday, August 29th, 2006
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