Cheesy polenta, wild mushrooms + thyme jaffle

Cheesy polenta, wild mushrooms + thyme jaffle

Chefs Eat Toasties Too
Brendan Homan

The buttery, herb-infused mushrooms are so delicious in this jaffle. Some things just go together and mushrooms, butter, herbs and cheesy polenta are some of those things.


Quantity Ingredient
8 slices white sandwich bread
750ml full-cream milk
125g polenta
100g unsalted butter, plus extra for spreading
60g parmigiano reggiano, finely grated
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh tarragon leaves
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
100g young fontina, chopped into cubes
salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper
60ml light olive oil
100g shiitake mushrooms, thickly sliced
100g swiss brown mushrooms, thickly sliced
100g oyster mushrooms, thickly sliced
4 portobello mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon worchestershire sauce
juice of 1/2 lemon


  1. Place the milk in a large cast-iron or heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Whisk in the polenta in a steady stream. Reduce the heat to low and cook the polenta for 10 minutes, whisking constantly. When the polenta is smooth and cooked through, whisk in half the butter, followed by the Parmigiano Reggiano. Fold in the herbs and finally stir in the fontina until melted. Remove from the heat and season to taste before covering the polenta in the pan with plastic wrap that is touching the surface, to ensure a skin does not form. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat and add the sliced mushrooms and thyme. Cook for 5 minutes until the mushrooms are golden and soft. Season with salt and pepper and cook for a further minute. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and add the remaining butter to the pan. Place the pan back on the heat and cook the butter to ‘noisette’ stage – until the butter turns brown and smells nutty. Remove the pan from the heat and add the worcestershire sauce and lemon juice. Return the mushrooms to the pan and toss again to mix. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
  3. Preheat a jaffle maker. Butter one side of each of the slices of bread. Assemble your four sandwiches directly in the jaffle maker (two at a time if that is the size of your machine). Place the bread slices, butter side down, in the jaffle maker and spread a generous amount of polenta on top. Add some mushrooms and sauce and top the jaffle with another slice of bread, butter side up. Close the jaffle maker and cook until golden brown and sealed.

Pro tips

  • Use whatever mushrooms you prefer in this and, likewise, change the cheese if you prefer something else or can’t find fontina. Raclette works as well. This will make more polenta than you need, so it’s a great way of using up polenta from last night’s dinner or getting ahead for tomorrow night’s dinner.
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