Halloween Snack Recipe: Hairy Eyeballs

Turn polenta poppers into "hairy eyeballs" for Halloween by frying them and adding a bloodshot appearance with marinara sauce.
Fried Polenta Poppers

Fried Polenta Poppers

Turn polenta poppers into "hairy eyeballs" for Halloween by frying them and adding a bloodshot appearance with marinara sauce.

Photo by: Beryl Cohen

Beryl Cohen

By: Meg Hall

Yield: 20 poppers


2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup yellow onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 quart chicken stock
1 cup ground cornmeal
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 freshly ground black pepper
1 cup Parmesan, freshly grated


1. In a medium saucepot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic to pan and cook until translucent.
2. Add chicken stock and heat until simmering
3. Gradually add cornmeal while whisking to prevent clumping
4. Stir until cornmeal is soft and the liquid has been mostly absorbed
5. Stir in Parmesan and butter. Season to taste
6. Pour polenta into sprayed nonstick pans (two loaf pans, preferably).
7. Once polenta is firm and cool, use a large melon baller to scoop out "eyeballs."
8. To get round balls, try to get the melon baller edges flush with the polenta surface then scoop. This will create a flat bottom and a round top.


1/2 cup marinara sauce
3 corn cobs, leaves removed, silk reserved, cut or torn into 1/2-inch strands
20 polenta "eyeballs"
4 whole eggs, whisked and placed in large bowl
1 quart canola oil, for frying

1. Heat canola oil in medium saucepot to approximately 325 degrees F.
2. Set up dipping station with the egg mixture first, then the corn silks in separate bowls.
3. One at a time, cover the polenta balls in egg, then coat in corn silk.
4. Gently lower polenta eyeballs into the oil and fry until the corn silk is golden brown.
5. Gently place polenta eyeballs on paper towels for draining.
6. Sprinkle each with kosher salt.
7. Garnish with marinara sauce on top of the round for a bloodshot eyeball effect.

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