Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and Grits
Now this is something I thought I would never put in mouth let alone order in a restaurant or even attempt to make myself!Well, that all has changed. Not only do I love Shrimp and Grits, I look for it on the menu's of every restaurant I go....within reason. I don't look for them in the Cook Out or Chick Fil A drive thru but you can be sure that if it has a decent wine list...I at least look for it. That doesn't mean I am always going to order it but I want to read the description on what their take is on it. The first time I bravely ordered shrimp and grits was this past winter at Lucky 32 Restaurant in Greensboro. Their recipe included sausage from Giaciamo's which is an Italian Market here in Greensboro and Giaciamo makes his own fresh authentic sausage, mozarella. and meatballs, among lots of other delicious things. I love to shop at his store! My last memorable shrimp and grits was enjoyed on the rooftop patio at Ganache Restarant also in Greensboro, NC ... Wonderful! This restaurant makes their Shrimp and Grits with smoked Gouda cheese and andouille sausage and the stone ground grits are from the Old Mill of Guilford in Oak Ridge, NC. For the moment, the Ganache Shrimp and Grits are at the top of my list. Now I know there are better Shrimp and Grits out there especially the further south you go and the closer to the ocean you get.... but I only started this quest. Are you a fan of shrimp and grits? So that I can looke for them in my travels, tell me where your favorites are and what makes them special.
In the meantime, here is a great recipe from the Southern Living All New Ultimate Recipe Cookbook that is very good. It has a lot of ingredients but is worth the time and effort. Make it even better and use a better quality Cheddar cheese and Parmesan Reggiano...not the stuff in the green can!
Shrimp and Grits
Prep: 18 minutes Cook: 28 minutes
2 cups water
1 14 oz. can chicken broth
3/4 cup half and half
3/4 tsp. salt
1 cup uncooked regular grits
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp hot sauce
4 bacon slices
1 pound unpeeled, medium size fresh shrimp
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 (8ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped green onions
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp hot sauce
Bring first 4 ingredients to a boil in a medium saucepan; gradually whisk in grits. Reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes or till thickened. Add Cheddar cheese and next 3 ingredients. Keep warm.
Cook bacon i large skillet until crisp. Remove and drain on paper towels, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings to skillet. Crumble bacon.
Peel and devein shrimp. Sprinkle shrimp with 1/4 tsp salt and pepper, dredge in flour.
Saute mushrooms in hot drippings in skillet for 5 minutes or until tender. Add 1/2 cup green onions and saute 2 minutes or until shrimp are lightly browned. Stir in 1/2 cup chicken broth, lemon juice, and 1/4 tsp hot sauce; cook 2 more minutes stirring to loosen particles from the bottom of the skillet. Serve shrimp mixture over hot cheese grits. Top with crumbled bacon. Yield: 4 servings.

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