In the world of professional cooking being able to make a good polenta is just as important as mastering the art of risotto. The careful watching of the pan. The constant stirring. Adding the fat and the liquid at just the right time. Turning out the polenta. Setting it. Then there's the second stage, after the maize concoction has cooled, when it is cut into squares or rounds and seared. Served with some sort of rich stew, polenta offers the diner food of substance, food that will "stick" to your ribs.