Polenta Chips - Are they healthier than Potato Chips?

Tuesday, July 3

On Saturday I managed to lure Pete into 4 hours of Shopping at Westfield Shopping Centre.  This was a pretty mighty feat, and one I'm sure won't be repeated in the very near future!



The success of this adventure was probably almost entirely down to lunch halfway through at Jamie Olivers Italian Restaurant, Jamies Italian, whilst we were there.


We shared the Italian Feast, and they bought out so much food that we called the waiter over thinking that they had bought us another tables dishes too!  Very good value for money if you are hungry at £15 a head.





There were various bits of deliciousness to sample, but a highlight was definitely the Polenta chips, which seem to be making an appearance on a lot of restaurant menus of late.


I have also made a Blueberry and Polenta cake recently, and so wanted to have a closer look at what Polenta really is.

I was very surprised when I realised, my ignorance this evening, that Polenta is actually ground maize!

  My Father grows tons of maize every year, and has been milling it in our shed (barn) since I can remember.  I grew up eating it in it's porridge form, known as mealie pap or mealie meal in South Africa, and it is also the staple diet for millions of Africans.

It also made sense then as to why I couldn't find the word Polenta in any of the indexes of my Superfood books.

However turning to the Maize page, there it describes that ground Maize or Corn, in Italy, is called Polenta.

I hoped that the depths of the internet would answer my question as to wether Polenta Chips are healthier than Potato Chips.  Unfortunately no answers were forthcoming and so I attempted to answer it myself.

Tonia Reinhard in her book Superfoods says:

Polenta is high in:
Vitamin C, folate, fiber, protein, pantothenic acid, thiamine, niacin, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium and manganese

And a good source of:
Vitamins A and B6, riboflavin, and zinc

And contains:
Antioxidant carotenoids lutein, zeaxanthin, beta crytopoxanthin and phenols

Pretty good looking credentials hey?? And the recipes that I've found all involve baking the chips and not frying them.

And for Potatoes in her book Superfoods, Reinhard says.

ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

Potatoes are not a superfood,  They don't even count as one of your "five a day" on the fruit and vegetable front.  That is a googlable fact :)

And so perhaps that is why there is no answer to the title of this post on the internet, because it's so glaringly obvious that no one needs ask it!

And so my apologies to those of you who thought it a ridiculous statement to even consider.

I'm going to try some of recipes soon, that I have found in my Polenta web surfing tonight, and will keep you updated as I do.

Say yes to Polenta Chips:)
 
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