Serves 6 Difficulty
For croutons: 1 Tablespoon olive oil 1 ounce proscuitto, finely diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 Tablespoon fresh oregano, finely chopped 1 Tablespoon fresh sage, finely chopped 1 cup gf chicken stock 1 cup water 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup coarse ground corn meal Freshly ground pepper 3 Tablespoons parmesan cheese 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter About 1/3 cup vegetable oil
For salad: 16 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and poached or sauteed 1 avocado, peeled and sliced 2 tomatoes sliced 4 handfuls of gourmet salad greens, washed and spun dry 3 Tablespoons olive oil 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar Salt and pepper to taste
For croutons: In a heavy saucepan, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add proscuitto, garlic and herbs. Saute until proscuitto is crisp, taking care not to burn garlic. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
Return same pan to medium-high heat. Bring chicken stock, water and salt to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add corn meal in a slow steady stream, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon. Cook at a simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 1-2 minutes. Polenta is ready when it comes away from side of pan when stirred. Add proscuitto mixture, pepper to taste, parmesan and butter. Stir until all is combined.
Rinse an 8" baking pan with water and shake out excess water. Add polenta. Using a rubber spatula spread polenta to 1/2" thickness . Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 1 hour, or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
When ready to cook, remove polenta to a cutting board and cut into 1" cubes. In a heavy deep saucepan heat oil until very hot. Fry croutons for about 5-8 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Fry as many croutons as will fit in pan without overcrowding. This may take a couple batches. Turn croutons once while frying. Remove to a paper towel.
For salad: Place greens and tomatoes in a large bowl.
In a small bowl, blend olive oil and vinegar together using a whisk. Pour over salad and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Divide salad amoung 4 salad plates and top each with 4 shrimp, 1/4 of the avocado slices and about 1/2 cup of polenta croutons. Serve immediately.