Italian Polenta Board

Prep Time: 30 min Cook Time: 90 min
Servings: 2 Skill Level: medium

“The Italian tradition of a “polenta board” dates back decades, and usually takes place during a celebration or gathering. While this recipe is inspired by this holiday tradition, my favorite part about it is its versatility and approachability. The chicken can be substituted for roasted root vegetables, beef, or pork and can be served atop creamy polenta, or on its own for a lighter affair. I especially enjoy the spices, herbs, and aromatics used in Pearls Specialities mix that adds a richness and depth of flavor to the tomato sauce without needing additional dried herbs or ingredients.”

Recipe and image attributed by Chef Joe Sasto


Tomato Sauce with Chicken

  • 1.5lbs Chicken Thighs
  • 1 jar @Pearls_Olives Specialities Kalamata, pitted
  • 1 jar @Pearls_Olives Specialities Pitted Medley
  • 28oz tomato sauce
  • 1ea lemon
  • 1bunch Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1ea white onion, sliced
  • 12ea garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 6tb butter, unsalted
  • 4tb olive oil
  • ½c chicken stock
  • 8oz jar of roasted red peppers, sliced
  • 1tsp chile flake (optional)
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup medium gind cornmeal
  • 2 tablespoons  butter
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cooking Instructions

Tomato Sauce with Chicken

  1. Sear the skin side of the chicken thighs over medium heat in a large skillet until golden, remove and set aside.
  2. Add the butter and when foamy, begin to saute the onions and garlic until softened and the butter begins to caramelize
  3. Add the chile flakes, olives (with the brine), tomato sauce, and chicken stock to the skillet.
  4. Stir to combine, and place the chicken thighs into the sauce.
  5. Cook over medium low heat until the sauce is reduced and the chicken is tender (about 1.5 hours).
  6. Finish with fresh chopped parsley and lemon juice. Don’t forget to season throughout to taste.


  1. Bring the water, butter and milk to a boil and add salt.
  2. Gradually sprinkle the polenta into the pan and mix. Turn Cook the polenta on a low simmer for 25-35 minutes, stirring frequently
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan


Alternatively use pre-made polenta, add to a pan with butter and stir in parmesan when warm.

To assemble, place polenta on a serving board and flatten. Top with the Tomato Sauce and dig-in!

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