JBARH RECIPE | Jalapeno Cheese Polenta

This polenta is one of my favorites and works nicely with my JBARH KINKY FRIEDMAN BRISKET.  He doesn’t know we call it that, but I am certain he’d be proud of it.



  • Olive oil to sauté

  • 2 cups chopped onions, mixed

  • 1-2 jalapeños minced

  • 4 cups chicken stock

  • 2 cups milk

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1tsp coarse ground pepper

  • 1 stick butter

  • 1.5 cups coarse cornmeal

  • 1 cup cheddar or pepperjack cheese


  • Heat a 2 quart saucepan (I use a cast iron “chicken fryer”) over medium high heat. Once it is hot add a tablespoon or so of olive oil. If it immediately spreads out and starts looking wavy you are ready to cook.

  • Add the onions and peppers and sauté until the just start to take on a bit of color.

  • Add the stock, milk, salt & pepper & butter and bring to a boil.

  • Lower the heat a little until the liquid rolls down to a simmer

  • Whisk the cornmeal in gradually until it is all incorporated.

  • Once the cornmeal is incorporated, continue to stir slowly with a wooden spoon until it begins to turn thick & creamy, about 10 minutes. (There has been much debate over whether or not the kind of spoon makes a difference in the finished product and without a doubt, you will get a creamier, better tasting polenta with a wooden spoon.)

  • Remove from heat and stir in cheese until incorporated.

  • ALTERNATE METHOD: Once cornmeal has been incorporated, cover and move the pan to a 350 degree oven. Give it a stir every 10 minutes or so until it’s thick and creamy, about 20-30 minutes.

  • Serve immediately or move to a wide, flat container, lined in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator.

This recipe makes 8-10 servings.

Polenta is AMAZING when refrigerated, sliced and sautéed in butter the next day.  CLICK HERE for my JBARH EGGS BENEDICT recipe using sauteed polenta cakes as the base.