Victor Protasio
Total Time
45 Mins
Serves 4

Instant polenta and sliced mushrooms help get this hearty, intensely flavorful dinner on the table in well under an hour. You can ladle the ragout over pasta or thickly sliced toast too.

Wine pairing: Decoy 2015 Pinot Noir (Sonoma County; $25)

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat a large deep frying pan (not nonstick) over medium-high heat until a drop of water skitters across its surface. Swirl in oil, add mushrooms, and cook undisturbed 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and stir in shallots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms have released all their liquid and shallots are tender, 7 to 8 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and thyme; cook 1 minute. Stir in wine, scraping up any bits from bottom of pan, and cook until mostly evaporated, 3 to 5 minutes.

Step 2

Add broth, 1/2 tsp. salt, and the pepper. Simmer until sauce thickens and mushrooms are tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter and 2 tbsp. parsley.

Step 3

Meanwhile, bring 1 qt. water and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Stirring constantly, add polenta. Cook, stirring, until polenta thickens, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in 1 3/4 cups cheese. Cover and set aside until ready to serve.

Step 4

Just before serving, stir polenta and divide among four deep, wide bowls. Top with mushroom ragout, remaining 1/4 cup cheese, and remaining 2 tbsp. parsley.

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