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Polenta Chips with Kalamata Olive Tapenade

Inspire by Chef Yotam Ottolenghi these polenta chips are a great alternative to parmesan crackers, and healthier! You can make them and keep them at room temperature in a sealed bag to snack on any time.

Prep time: 40min Cook time: 20min Total time: 60min
Serves: 5ppl


2 ¾ cups water

¾ cup quick-cooking polenta

½ teaspoon red chili flakes

1 garlic glove, crushed

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ cup parmesan cheese, grated

1 teaspoon Kosher salt

For olive tapenade:

½ cup pitted kalamata olives

½ tablespoon shallot, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons capers

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

2 tablespoon parsley, roughly chopped

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

4 tablespoons olive oil


  • In a medium-size saucepan, boil water along with chili flakes, garlic, 1 tablespoon of oil, and salt.

  • Once the water comes to a boil, turn the heat down to medium-low and slowly add the polenta whisking constantly to avoid lumps.

  • Cook for 2 minutes, whisking constantly until it starts to pull away from the sides and it has thickened.

  • Add the cheese (reserving 1/8 cup for later) and continue to whisk until incorporated, about 1 minute.

  • Transfer the polenta to a large piece of parchment paper, (this needs to be done quickly, make sure to have two parchment papers pre-cut one for the bottom and one for the top)

  • Cover the polenta with the other piece of parchment and with a rolling pin or wine bottle roll the polenta about ½ inch thick and as evenly as possible.

  • Let it cool for 30 minutes.

  • Heat oven at 375°F

  • Once the polenta is cooled, remove the top parchment paper and brush with olive oil and sprinkle the remaining cheese.

  • Cut into squares, transfer to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, and bake (oil side up) for 20 minutes, turning the baking sheet halfway.

  • To make the olive tapenade, place all ingredients except the olive oil in a food processor, and pulse 3-4 times until everything comes together. Scrape down the side with a spatula and continue pulsing adding the olive oil little by little, careful not to overmix. This shouldn’t take longer than 2-3 minutes.

  • Once the chips are cooked, let them cool for about 10 minutes and serve with the tapenade on the side.


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