Pancetta Wrapped Asparagus on Parmesan Polenta Print Email

1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and blanched
1-2 TBS olive oil
pinches of fleur de sel and black pepper
8 slices pancetta, about as thick as a nickel
Parmesan polenta - recipe follows
4 eggs, room temperature
pinches of fleur de sel and black pepper
curls of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Tony's Vodka Sauce

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare a parchment lined cookie sheet or jellyroll pan. Blanch asparagus for 30-60 seconds in boiling water, and then chill quickly in ice water - dry.

On prepared cookie sheet, toss dry asparagus in olive oil and scant pinches of salt and pepper. Arrange into four even piles and gently bundle asparagus in pancetta - toothpicks or extra pancetta can be used if needed.

Boil water for polenta and have those ingredients ready.

Place pan of asparagus in oven and roast until the pancetta is lightly browned and the asparagus is tender - about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, finish the polenta and then cook eggs poached, over easy or sunny-side-up.

Spoon creamy polenta on four pasta plates, nestle an asparagus bundle into each plate and top with an egg, garnish with pinches of fleur de sel, black pepper and curls of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Garnish with Tony's Vodka Sauce, if desired, and serve with grilled or roasted meats and a tossed or tomato salad. - Chef Mick (Michaelangelo) Rosacci, --

Parmesan Polenta

4 cups Water or light low sodium stock
1 tsp Salt
1 TBS Butter
1 cup quick cooking Polenta
½ cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
milk or cream, if needed, to taste

Add salt or stock (light and very low sodium) and butter to water and bring to a boil. Pour in the polenta and reduce heat, stirring constantly. The mixture will begin to thicken in just a few minutes. Add grated parmesan, continuing to stir until well-incorporated - if polenta becomes too dry or thick, add water, milk or cream.

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