Corn on Corn: Polenta with Squash, Corn, and Basil

Using up the last of the sweet white corn out of the box and I still can't get enough! Thus, I present to you : Polenta with corn, basil, and summer squash. A super-quick and delicious dish with a sweet, creamy texture that can be served as a main course or a side; we also cooked up some vegan bacon (fakeon?) and threw it on top for a bit of protein and smokiness. Instead of cornmeal, I used instant polenta, which cut the cooking time down to 20 minutes.

Corn on Corn

serves 4

(Modified from the wonderful fresh365)

1 T olive oil
2 T butter (can be eliminated if you don't like butter, replace with 2 T of oil)
2 garlic cloves
1 med onion
1 small summer squash, sliced into quarters
4 ears corn, husked
note: we used corn that had been grilled to add a smoky flavor to the polenta, but this step isn't necessary
3 c water
1 c instant polenta
1 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1 c shredded asiago cheese(would also be delicous with fine sharp cheddar, or even provelone or gouda for a milder taste)
1/6 c fresh basil leaves, chopped
note: if you're picking your own basil from a plant in the garden, make sure to pluck from the sides and top, selecting mature leaves.

In a large saucepan, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add garlic and onion and sauté 5-7 minutes, until onion is translucent. Add thinly sliced summer squash pieces. With a serrated knife, cut corn kernels off ear, directly into the pan. To do this, I use a long bread knife, standing the corn on its side legnthwise, holding the cob in my left hand and resting the bottom on a surface. Keeping the knife close to the shank, I use a slight sawing motion to cut the kernels off, top to bottom.
Once you've gotten the corn into the pan, sautée 2-3 minutes, stirring. Add water, instant polenta, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a low simmer. Cook, stirring often, 10-12 minutes, or until you've gotten a smooth, creamy texture. Take pot off heat, and stir in asaigo and basil.
Top with lightly pan-fried vegan bacon and another sprinkle of shredded basil leaves.

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