Cheesy Grits with Tetsukabuto and Mushrooms
Creamy, rich grits-meets-polenta that's full of savory winter squash and topped with crispy mushrooms. Delicious!
- 1 Tetsukabuto squash (roughly 3.5lbs, yielding about 2 cups cooked)
- 8oz Shelburne Farms Cheddar
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 cup coarse Wapsie cornmeal
- One red or yellow onion
- 1-2 pints mushrooms
- Pinch of thyme
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 425F. Wash, halve, and seed Tetsukabuto squash. Coat with oil and bake on a baking sheet, cut side down, for approx 45 minutes (or until soft).
- While squash is cooking, peel and small-dice onion and cook in a skillet with olive oil over medium heat until soft and sweet, roughly 7 minutes. Set aside.
- Grate cheddar and cut mushrooms (including stems) into thin pieces, then set aside.
- When squash is done, remove from oven and reduce heat to 325F. Place one rack on top and one rack on bottom of oven.
- Take a large oven-proof pan or cast-iron skillet. Boil 4.5 cups of water (your tea kettle is fastest). Add butter to pan, then add boiling water and whisk until butter is fully melted. Slowly add 1 cup coarse cornmeal, whisking to incorporate, then cover with foil or lid and place on bottom rack of oven.
- Spread mushrooms on baking sheet in single layer, then drizzle with olive oil, salt, and thyme. Put in top rack of oven.
- Bake cornmeal and mushrooms for 25 minutes. Meanwhile, scoop squash into a bowl and mix with cheese and cooked onion until smooth.
- Remove polenta from oven, then increase oven temperature to 500 (or set broiler to low) to crisp up mushrooms.
- Incorporate squash mixture into polenta little by little, adding a splash of milk if it becomes difficult to stir. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove mushrooms from oven when crispy. Serve polenta/grits in bowls with crispy mushrooms as garnish! (And maybe some hot sauce.) Enjoy!