4 cups broth–chicken or vegetable (if you don’t have any handy, water will do just fine)
1 cup polenta or coarse ground yellow corn grits
1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
1 lb kale, stems removed and leaves coarsely chopped
3 slices bacon, chopped (optional; replace with olive oil if you wish)
1 leek, washed, cut in half lengthwise and then thinly sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
Make the grits:
Bring 3 cups water or broth to a boil. Stir in grits or polenta. Whisk vigorously until polenta comes together and starts to bubble. Turn the heat down to low and allow to cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring often. Consistency should be very thick and coat the back of a spoon. Stir in cheese just before serving.
Make the kale:
Cook the bacon in a high sided saute pan over medium high heat until browned. Add onions and leek and saute until tender, approximately 5 minutes. Add the kale, reserved 1 cup of broth, red pepper flakes, and vinegar, stirring until the kale is starting to wilt. Cover the pan, turn the heat down to medium low and braise for 10-15 minutes until kale is very tender. If there is too much liquid, turn up the heat and cook some of the excess liquid off.
Serve a scoop of polenta in a wide bowl, and top with kale.