Creamy Polenta with Braised Greens, Poached Eggs and Chile Oil

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 30 min
  • Active: 1 hr 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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1 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup Calabria hot long chile peppers, stem removed and finely chopped 

1 cup whole milk 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

1 cup polenta or yellow cornmeal 

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

4 tablespoons unsalted butter 

1 small red onion, finely diced 

2 cloves garlic, smashed and worked to a paste with your knife 

1 1/4 pounds mustard greens, ribs removed and chopped 


2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 

4 poached eggs 

Parsley, for garnish 


  1. Combine 1 cup of the oil, the chiles and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt in a medium saute pan over low heat and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool completely. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepot over medium-high heat, bring 3 cups water, the milk, 1 teaspoon salt and some pepper to a boil. Gradually whisk in the polenta, whisking constantly until the mixture is smooth and begins to thicken.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, until tender and thickened but still creamy, about 30 minutes, adding more water if needed. Stir in the Parmesan and butter. Remove from heat and keep warm.
  4. Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a large high-sided saute pan over high heat. Add the onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the mustard greens, tossing to coat. Add a few drops of honey and then season with salt and pepper.
  5. Reduce the heat to medium, stir in 1 cup water, then cover and cook until wilted and soft, about 10 minutes. Remove the lid and cook and additional 5 minutes to cook off any extra liquid. Stir in the vinegar just before serving. Taste, and season with more honey, salt and pepper if necessary.
  6. To serve, spoon the polenta into 4 bowls, top with some of the greens, a poached egg and drizzle with the reserved chile oil. Garnish with parsley.