Yellow polenta with braised tripe
“Here is a treat that will either appeal or not. I have given up trying to convert people, although I do find that most people like tripe once they’ve tasted it. I frequently serve this dish in my restaurant as a ‘special’, over and above the menu of the day. You can buy tripe in several ways: either uncooked, which takes a long time to cook, or part-cooked, which tends to be a more acceptable option. The softness of tripe goes exceptionally well with polenta.”
50 ml olive oil
2 onions, peeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
200 g pork belly, cut into several pieces (optional)
1 kg part-cooked tripe, blanched in boiling water
80 ml red wine
600 g tomatoes, peeled
a pinch of chilli powder
salt and pepper
200 g cooked borlotti beans (optional)
1 quantity Polenta (see page 112)
Heat the oil in a large heavy-based casserole and sauté the onions, carrots and celery until they soften and brown. If using the pork belly, sauté it with the vegetables.
Slice the tripe into strips about 5 mm wide, although you’ll find the length will vary.
Add the tripe to the casserole with the wine. Simmer until the wine has evaporated, then add the tomatoes and seasonings and simmer gently with the lid askew for 11 ⁄2 hours, or until the tripe is creamy and soft.
Add the borlotti beans, if you’re using them, towards the end of the cooking time.
Make the polenta following my polenta recipe and serve with the tripe.