Polenta Fries



Welcome to June, TIV friends!

Now that BBQ season is once again upon us, I rarely feel like turning on the oven.

Unless, of course, it's to make a side dish to accompany whatever main is in the works on the backyard grill.

Today I bring you an alternative to the all-American favourite summer combo: hot dog and fries. This here is the hot dog and polenta fries combo (and a little bit of asparagus, for good measure).

The first time I had polenta fries it was at this restaurant that we used to frequent as omnis called Salute in uptown Waterloo. It has long since closed, but I often find myself thinking of that polenta fries appetizer that I had at Salute on my 23rd birthday.

Awhile back my mom bought me a bunch of prepared polenta tubes in various flavours, like this one...



...so it was the perfect time to try making them myself.

Making fries out of polenta is pretty self-explanatory. You peel the coating off the prepared polenta tube and then cut it into fry-like strips, like so:



Then, you mix in your favourite spices. I like chipotle chili powder myself, but this time around I followed this recipe from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan and used rosemary instead. Mix together with a little bit of oil and a little bit of cornmeal and toss in the oven at 450F for 20 minutes to a half hour, just long enough to get those pinto bean hot dogs or portobello burgers going on the grill.

You can also take a tip from that old restaurant we used to go to and serve it on its own, with a dipping sauce. Dreena Burton suggests her Smoky Avocado sauce, which I am known to smother burritos in from time to time. A nice vegan garlic aioli would be awesome too!

P.S. Judging from the photos on this post and my pinto bean hot dog post, you'd think I'd never used a ketchup bottle before. It never fails, whenever I'm taking blog photos the ketchup bottle decides to explode all over the damn place. No big deal..who doesn't love extra ketchup?!

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