Thursday, May 08, 2008

Polenta: salsicce, finocchio selvatico, e tuma

Tuma is a typical Sicilian fresh cheese made from sheep's milk. It has a cylindrical appearance and is sold fresh, no more than 2 days old. Our tuma is made and delivered to us weekly by the same man who makes our ricotta. Renowned for its delicate milk flavour, it has no crust, and the dough is white or ivory-white without holes. The texture is very soft, tender, with a rubbery consistency. Tuma can be consumed either cold or hot. We, however, love to bake it in dishes. Once heated, the Tuma takes on a whole new flavor.

Polenta with sausage, wild fennel, and tuma

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the wild fennel greens and boil the leaves until tender. Remove the greens and set aside. Saving the cooking water, bring back to a boil and begin to prepare the polenta. ( For two, 130 grams of polenta)

Transfer the polenta into a buttered baking dish and let cool.

In a pan, boil down one onion. (Again, I do not fry!) Once cooked, open four sausage links and add the meat to the onions. Cook together until the sausage it browned. Add the boiled fennel leaves to the pan and continue to cook.

Once everything is well combined you can simply cover the polenta dish with the sausage mixture and top with slices of tuma. Place in the oven to brown.

The crunchy tuma, mixed with the sweet delicately flavored finocchio and sausage, made this dish a real pleasure...


rowena said...

I am envious of your ability to get fresh tuma! It's the one ingredient that I need (and I refuse to substitute) in order to make that "Lo Sfoglio" dessert made famous at that pasticceria in Polizzi Generosa.

This dish here is sumptuous. I heart wild fennel!!

Julie said...

That looks really delicious Jilli, I will have to give this a try.

Jilli said...

"Lo Sfoglio", I have to try this... Like you said, any subsitutions would just not be the same. I would love to try it! I read that on the last week of July there is the "giornata dello Sfoglio". I know where I'll be... :)

Please do! I hope you can find the fennel where you are. The sweet mixed with the sausage is great!

rowena said...

Jilli, you lucky gal you! I have that event on my "dream list" - one day, one day! I certainly do hope that you'll be able to make it...I'll be crossing my fingers for a report!

Jilli said...

Ok, off to work I go!!