CNN – It’s golden, grainy, sticky and tastes rather bland if served on its own. But the sheer versatility of polenta has transformed it into a culinary star, with Italy’s famed boiled cornmeal dish pairing nicely with an endless number of flavours. Toppings can include everything from venison, fish, rabbit, wild boar and braised veal to mushrooms, tomato sauce and melted cheese. It can also be used in desserts, including biscuits, pies and pancakes. Some even eat it with Nutella. And one can’t forget the textures. It comes in many forms and can be chewy, gluey, crispy or extremely creamy. Polenta is eaten across Italy, but there are three main regions in the country’s north where it’s particularly popular – Veneto, Lombardy and Piedmont.

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