It's been freezing here in the Napa Valley and the fireplace has been very busy. My Inner Puritan can't enjoy the fireplace without thinking I'm not worthy and I should at least find another use for the flames. I'd made the Good Mother Stallard Beans the night before. I just added some garlic, onion, and olive oil to the bean and water and put the clay pot on top of the wood-burning stove. As the fire dwindled, I put the pot inside, resting on the embers. Last night, as I was about to go to bed, I remembered polenta. I used three cups of water and 1 cup of polenta with a dab of butter. I whisked them together until somewhat combined and the placed the pot, with lid, in the embers. The photo makes it look like a roaring blaze but the fire was on its way out. In the morning, as I was drinking my piloncillo and canela sweetened coffee, it dawned on me that I had made the polenta. This is what I was greeted with: The polenta had solidified into a cake and pulled away easily from the sides of the pot. I think I could have added more liquid, reheated and made a warm, indulgent mush but I thought it would be more fun to heat the wedge and smother it with the Good Mother Stallards. What a great breakfast! I added a wee touch of grated dry cheese (OK, a ton of it.) Carnivores could add some bacon, pancetta or even leftover roast chicken but this was perfectly swell and I'd eat again in a heartbeat.