It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Everywhere you go. Take a look in the Five and Ten. Glistening once again, with candy canes and silver lanes aglow. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas .Toys in every store, but the prettiest sight to see is the holly that will be on your own front door. Fa La la la la la la laaaa..

Polenta Bites with Sherried Mushrooms, Asparagus and Parmesan 7

Ahh I’m in major Christmas mode, my decorations have been up since the week before Thanksgiving, almost all my shopping is done, and I’ve got Christmas music on rotation 24/7, even at work. Dahh, dah, da, da da….

There are a lot of reasons why this is one of my favorite times of the year, obviously spending quality time with friends and family is at the top of the list, but I also loveee all of the holiday parties going on. Tonight is Kevin’s work Christmas party, and then we have a party every night of each weekend until Christmas. I’m so excited, I can hardly contain myself! There’s nothing I love more than getting all dressed up, sipping on fancy schmancy cocktails and chatting the night away.

While we aren’t having our own Christmas party this year since it’s just too busy, that doesn’t mean I won’t be bringing lots of snacks and treats to the parties we will be attending (these sausage rolls will be recurring at several places). I’m still brainstorming more ideas, but I think these little polenta canapes will be perfect for one of the parties we’ll be attending next weekend.

Polenta Bites with Sherried Mushrooms, Asparagus and Parmesan 3

Tiny little polenta rounds are crisped up in a little bit of olive oil and covered with hearty sherried mushrooms and asparagus, they’re then topped off with a little bit of shaved parmesan for a final pretty (and tasty) touch.

These are so so elegant and no one will be the wiser on how incredibly easy they are to put together. The polenta can be cooked ahead of time, just cut out all the rounds, store in an airtight container and then fry them up right before serving. The mushrooms and asparagus come together in mere minutes, so it’s not necessary to make them ahead of time, but if you want you definitely could. Just heat them up with a touch more cream right before serving and voilà, done.

Even if you don’t have a holiday party to make these for, they’re perfect for a quiet night at home with a tall glass of champs, and bonus? You get them all for yourself…

Polenta Bites with Sherried Mushrooms, Asparagus and Parmesan 2

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Polenta Bites with Sherried Mushrooms, Asparagus and Parmesan
Serves: About 12 rounds
  • 8 tablespoons quick-cook polenta
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups mixed mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup chopped asparagus
  • ½ tablespoon butter and ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup dry sherry
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Parmesan shavings
  1. Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Slowly whisk in polenta, reduce heat to low and whisk until thickened, about 1-2 minutes.
  2. Spread evenly into a grease sheet pan, it should be about ¼ inch thick.
  3. Cool completely.
  4. Once cool, use a cookie or biscuit cutter and cut into circles, about 1½ inches in diameter.
  5. In a large skillet melt oil and butter over a medium heat. Brown mushrooms, should take 3-4 minutes. Add asparagus and season with a little bit of salt and pepper, cook another two minutes until asparagus is slightly tender.
  6. Add sherry until reduced and soaked up by mushrooms. Add cream, reduce until almost all the liquid has soaked into the mushrooms. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
  7. Heat another large skillet over a medium-high flame. Add a 1 teaspoon of olive oil, cook polenta round until golden brown on both sides, about one 1 minute per side.
  8. Spoon mushroom mixture over polenta round and top with shaved parmesan.

Polenta Bites with Sherried Mushrooms, Asparagus and Parmesan 8

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