1 cup of water, boil and stir occasionally for 5-6 minutes, and pour
into a mold (or leave it in the pan it's in if I don't need that pan.)
I do this in the morning, but it can be done th night before. It
sets up in a few hours.
Then at dinner time, I fry it in olive oil (or you could use butter)
with garlic or garlic powder and often black olives. Or with marinara
sauce (heated and added afterward). The polenta should be started
first, before you make other stuff. It takes a while. If cooked on
medium high (on my stove), it only needs to be turned once after maybe
10-15 minutes, then 10-15 on the other side.
If you use regular cornmeal, it needs to be cooked a little longer in
the first stage. You can also buy polenta that is cooked in a tube
and they you just have to fry it--remember, it takes a while! Don't
slice it too thin unless you want it to taste more like corn chips
than polenta. Spicing it with salt, pepper, garlic, onions and/or
marinara or salsa is really important, as is frying it long enough for
it to become somewhat brown and crispy at least on the edges, and
preferably a little more than that.