The secret to this smooth and creamy polenta is okra, but people will think you used butter lavishly. Leftovers are great sliced and fried in a bit of olive oil.
In small Dutch oven or large, heavy saucepan, combine okra, onion, thyme and 2 tablespoons butter. Add 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and boil gently, uncovered, until okra is tender and mixture is almost dry, about 20 minutes.
In medium bowl, combine polenta with 1 cup water, mixing to make thick paste. Stir paste into okra mixture. Gradually whisk 4 cups boiling water into polenta, about 1⁄2 cup at a time, while stirring vigorously to avoid lumps. Cook, stirring constantly, until creamy and tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
To serve, spoon into shallow bowls and dot each serving with some of the remaining butter.