Definition of polenta in English:



  • 1[mass noun] Maize flour as used in Italian cooking; cornmeal.

    ‘maize is used, more coarsely ground, in Italy's versatile polenta’
    • ‘Breads, pasta, rice, noodles, couscous, polenta, bulgur and other grains are your main sources of carbohydrates.’
    • ‘It also contains a number of grains, soaked overnight: linseed, rolled oats, polenta, sunflower seeds, purple kibbled wheat and sesame seeds.’
    • ‘Small dumplings, poached in boiling water then tossed with some kind of sauce, gnocchi can be made of potato, flour and ricotta, semolina, milk and cheese, and even polenta.’
    • ‘Place the polenta, flour and baking powder in a bowl, with the salt and sugar.’
    • ‘Soy grits are coarsely ground soybeans that can be used instead of corn grits or breakfast cereal, or mixed in polenta.’
    • ‘Add the flour, polenta and the baking powder, and mix.’
    • ‘Place the polenta, flour, sugar and lemon zest in a food processor with a pinch of salt.’
    • ‘Many of these have their own specific names, such as frumenty, made from wheat; tsampa, made from barley; polenta, made from maize; congee, from rice.’
    • ‘Cornmeal and polenta are not the same thing as cornstarch or cornflour.’
    • ‘Sift the polenta, flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.’
    • ‘This local ingredient even found its way as far as Europe in the form of Italian polenta.’
    • ‘Preheat the oven to 220°C. Lightly dust a metal tray with semolina or polenta.’
    • ‘While you can certainly choose to buy Italian polenta at a specialty store, you can use any finely ground cornmeal - and stone-ground, organic cornmeal is a good choice.’
    • ‘Fold in the flour and polenta followed by the lemon zest.’
    1. 1.1A paste or dough made from polenta, which is boiled and typically then fried or baked.
      ‘roasted pork accompanied by grilled polenta’
      • ‘Truth is, Gnocchi has more in common with polenta than pasta, at least when it comes to its genealogy.’
      • ‘My decision to opt for fillet of beef with soft Gorgonzola polenta, cêpes, candied shallots and rosemary was inspired, even if it led to a calorific overload that made me feel as if I wouldn't be able to walk for a week.’
      • ‘And one evening we try crispy-crusted pig's-feet cakes, meltingly soft chunks of meat encased in polenta.’
      • ‘The bloggers dined al fresco on grilled marinated flank steak, polenta and Asparagus, with the aforementioned salad and cheesecake janegalt.’
      • ‘It came to the table along with a soothing, interestingly chewy soup made of burrata cheese and fine white polenta, and a pair of nicely roasted scallops scored on their tops to resemble a pair of blooming flowers.’
      • ‘Who knew you could grill polenta on an indoor grill?’
      • ‘My suggestion is to make soft polenta, as the leftovers will set into firm polenta anyway, which you can grill or pan-fry to serve with pork sausages or a hot tomato sauce or, indeed, any leftover mushroom sauce.’
      • ‘Expect to wait anything up to an hour for your food, to eat pasta or polenta out of a plastic container, to drink wine served in an old mineral water bottle and to tango the night away with someone old enough to be your grandfather.’
      • ‘T shivered theatrically and chose risotto with asparagus, clams and octopus carpaccio to start, followed by rump steak and polenta.’
      • ‘Along the coast, a meal usually includes fish and pasta, risotto, or polenta.’
      • ‘You can't serve a Cumberland sausage with balsamic vinegar, polenta and all that foreign muck, you just can't.’
      • ‘But if you let it settle and you slice it, or even better yet, if the slices are grilled, then polenta is my very good friend.’
      • ‘This easy vegetable stew makes a great main dish when served over pasta, grilled artisan-style bread, or polenta.’
      • ‘Toss on a little salt after roasting and add to pasta, polenta, pizza and omelets.’
      • ‘Roast lamb rib eye, with braised lettuce and baked white polenta, a ground corn dish - once regarded as a staple in Italy and now transformed into a fashionable accompaniment - is rounded off with Shiraz gravy.’
      • ‘Grilled polenta with sautéed wild mushrooms in a spicy artichoke ragoût is better.’
      • ‘But sometimes I make an omelette and sometimes I'll have - oh, on Monday night when I went home and had a dinner party, we had ox tail stew with watercress and polenta.’
      • ‘A loin of spring rabbit pan-roasted with chanterelles and accompanied by polenta with texture and presence is just as welcoming.’
      • ‘I took the waitress's suggestion for the most popular dish: a slow cooked pork with bleu cheese polenta and spinach.’
      • ‘We were treated to a roasted marinated rack of lamb on a spiced lentil stew with basil polenta and rosemary gravy.’


Late 16th century: Italian, from Latin, pearl barley (a sense of polenta in Old English).