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This simple, tasty side dish pairs well with grilled Garlic & Lime Chicken and Grilled Zucchini & Onions. Adapted from Moosewood Restaurant New Classics cookbook. (*Indicates Potomac Vegetable Farm (PVF) produce. For more information about what we are doing with our PVF CSA share, click here.)


  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground fennel seeds
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch garlic scapes, chopped*
  • 1 bunch of swiss chard, rinsed and chopped*


  1. Cut off and discard the very ends of the swiss chard. Coarsely chop, stems and all. Rinse well and set aside in a colander to drain.
  2. Bring water to a boil in a large pot and slowly pour in the cornmeal while stirring briskly with a whisk or a wooden spoon. Break up any lumps that form. Simmer on low heat, stirring frequently, until the polenta is thick and tastes done. Stir in the salt, fennel and cheese. Add ground pepper to taste. (Note: you may need to add more water and cook for 5 to 30 minutes depending on how course the cornmeal is.)
  3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a heavy pan. Add the garlic scapes and salt and saute on medium heat just until the garlic begins to brown. Add the swiss chard, and cook, stirring frequently, for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Set aside until the polenta is done.
  4. Serve the polenta topped with swiss chard and a little extra parmesan cheese.