Dinner the other night was simple and, more importantly, delicious. I usually cook polenta with water or stock but this recipe uses milk and it makes it amazingly creamy. The sage adds the perfect flavour for this dish. The bacon keeps the chicken moist while it cooks. I served it with potatoes, zucchini and red and yellow peppers, roasted in garlic-infused olive oil for 20 minutes.
For the last week, I have been a part of a group of amazing women promoting 30 healthy living e-books, including mine, and I have learned so much in that time from these bloggers. They are dedicated to living authentic healthy lives and eating real food and are all stars in their own right.
However, living in New Zealand, I come from a different base point. These bloggers talk about grass-fed beef and organic vegetables from farmer’s markets as something unusual, as the meta to reach. But here, these things are not at all unusual. All our cattle eat grass and it is simple to find organic vegetables straight from the farmers or even in our supermarkets. We don’t allow GMO crops to be grown here, just the same as we don’t allow nuclear power. In New Zealand, we have always taken our own stances on issues, and it seems we live simpler lives than those in many other countries. Here, we have less need to analyse every facet of what goes in our mouths. I’m not saying we don’t think about it, but just that we don’t get quite so militant about it, perhaps because we are not so far off-track from healthy, real food eating as in other nations. That’s not to say that some people don’t overeat on fast foods and processed foods because they do. But that is their choice – they can also choose to eat healthy real food because it is available everywhere. In the US, it seems, from these blogs I read, that the government is making choices for their people that are reducing the ease with which people have access to natural foods, grown and bred in the way they once were, and still are here. This makes me feel blessed to live in New Zealand, and I very much appreciate what these women elsewhere are doing to try to preserve a way of life that is slipping through their fingers.
- 4 x 200g skinless chicken breasts
- 8 slices of bacon
- 3 cups of milk
- 2 tbsp garlic-infused olive oil
- ⅔ cup of instant polenta
- 2 tbsp sage leaves, torn up
- salt and black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
- Wrap each chicken fillet in 2 slices of bacon to cover.
- Place in a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove and cut in thick slices and place on top of the polenta.
- Heat the milk and olive oil in a saucepan until almost boiling.
- Add the polenta gradually, stirring all the time and bring to the boil.
- Reduce to low and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and add the sage and season.
- Spoon onto plates and top with the chicken.
Source of recipe: Food Intolerance Management Plan
Hotly Spiced says
That’s a wonderful looking dinner – I love chicken wrapped in bacon! So good to hear that all your cattle graze on grass and aren’t in feed lots and that you don’t have any GMO foods being produced – excellent xx
I would imagine your cattle are grass-fed or is that not true?
Great looking dish! I love cooking with cornmeal! Actually it’s reasonably easy to find organic fruits and veggies and grass-fed meat in the US if you’re in a big city, and most supermarkets carry at least some. But you do have to look, and sometimes the prices are absurd. Lots of choices – you can buy anything you want – but alas, you do have to pay. Anyway, really nice recipe – thanks.
I am very pleased your experience is different and I would expect that you find real foods because you cook such beautiful clean dishes.
I don’t live there and so obviously can only go on what I read, and this particular group of real food bloggers gives the impression that most of the beef is grain fed and that large quantities of fast foods and processed foods are consumed in the US. I would love to know this is not true.
Aunt Clara @ Aunt Clara's Kitchen says
Go NZ! When I became pregnant my long-planned trip to NZ with my husband was cancelled, he had been traveling to Auckland for a while by then. In his words: NZ is like Denmark, but with mountains. Trust me, it’s the highest compliment my husband could give a country.
For completely different reasons, we also have access to a mostly-organic diet. And most of our cows are free-range and grass-fed. It may not make for the tenderest, tastier animals, but they sure make healthier meat.
Thank you to your husband on behalf of my country. It’s a pretty great country to live in. I’m pleased to hear your country also produces healthy food for its citizens. I have never tasted grain-fed beef so I wouldn’t know the difference. Maybe it’s a good idea to keep it that way.
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
Creamy polenta is one of my favorite things, I love that you added sage! You are so fortunate to have access to such quality food!
Laura, I didn’t realise that it wasn’t like that in the US as well until I started reading these blogs by real food advocates. I think it could be a sad slide downhill.
The Life of Clare says
This dinner looks fantastic! I love polenta and the idea of chicken wrapped in bacon sounds wonderful!
It was a good dinner – I feed my men well!
Julia | JuliasAlbum.com says
I love polenta, just cooked it the other day with seafood. Chicken wrapped in bacon is always a winner!
That sounds good. If the polenta is creamy like this one, you don’t even need a sauce, which saves time. It is such a versatile grain.
What a scrumptious meal! I love polenta but have only cooked it a few times, your recipe gives me a reason to cook it again.
That’s great that New Zealand has such quality food available as well as high standards. In Europe we are lucky because much is the same. It’s sad the quality and things the food industry is allowed to get away with in the US — good thing people are starting to pay attention and trying to change it all. I’ve watched a couple documentaries on the food industry there and it’s not only disgusting but appalling. Both hubby’s and my family live there.
Get the instant polenta to save your arms with all that stirring!
The food industry certainly has a lot to answer for. It’s all about money and not about the health of the nation.
Marta @ What should I eat for breakfast today says
In Poland it’s similar, food is organic and not processed. But during my stay in USA I’ve noticed that a good food is much more expensive…
I’m glad to hear that food is organic in Poland. It’s such a shame that it has to be more expensive. Organic food is more expensive here too.
Chantelle Nunez says
We enjoyed your recipe tonight. I think that’s the first time I’ve had polenta – definitely the first time I’ve had ‘creamy polenta’ anyway. That was so delicious – I’m tempted to sit down and eat the remaining polenta with a spoon! Thumbs up from the kiddos as well. Thanks for introducing me to a whole new side dish!
That’s great, Chantelle. We eat quite a lot of polenta and the creamy version is a nice change from the normal one cooked in water. I’m glad the kids are enjoying the new dishes.