30 days of Food Challenge – Day 3: Favorite Supper Food

This is a difficult one. I'm torn between my two favorite dinners. I'm going with the one that is harder to come by. I had shrimp and grits for the first time in Macon, GA when we lived there over ten years ago. Since then, if it is on a menu, I will order it. Shrimp and grits sounds weird. I grew up with grits as a breakfast food, but lo and behold, they can be paired with things and become a supper food! The thing about shrimp and grits is, it's not just the shrimp – it's not plain old grits – it's when they come together with a sauce that is out of this world yummy.

The recipe I'm giving you today is from Throwdown with Bobby Flay. It is not Bobby Flay's recipe, as he did not win the throwdown. I can assure you that Joe Barnett knew his shrimp and grits. My mouth was watering. 

Ingredients

Shrimp:

  • 1 1/2 pounds (26-30 count) Wild Georgia Shrimp
  • 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning (recommended: Tone's LouisianaCajun seasoning)
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Grits:

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes (recommended: Knorr)
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 cup quick grits (recommended: Quaker)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 1/2 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar

Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (recommended: Texas Pete)
  • 1 slice sugar-cured country ham

Directions

First, peel and devein the shrimp. In a small bowl, combine Cajun seasoning, paprika, Italian seasoning and salt and pepper, to taste. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the shrimp to coat well and set the shrimp aside.

Next, make your grits. In a medium saucepan, bring water, chicken bouillon cubes and 2 tablespoons butter to a boil. Slowly add the grits, whisking often with wire whisk for 5 minutes. Add tomato paste, cream, and cheese. Keep whisking for another 2 or 3 minutes until the grits become creamy. Don't skimp on the butter and the cream, folks.

Now saute the shrimp. In a large saute pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add minced garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add in the spice-coated shrimp, and cook only until they're just done and tender. Don't overcook. Remove the shrimp from the saute pan and set them aside in a bowl. You can taste 1 or 2, to see if they're okay.

The roux is next. With all those wonderful drippings from the shrimp in the saute pan, add 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour and stir with a wooden spatula to make a roux. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until roux reaches a medium-tan color, then slowly add the chicken stock and heavy whipping cream. Whisk together and cook for 2 minutes, then whisk in Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. Set aside.

And last, a little country ham. Cook 1 center slice of cured country ham in a saute pan, and cut into cubes.

To serve, and this is the best part-place a few heaping spoonfuls of steaming cheese grits onto a place, top with several sizzling shrimp. Drizzle that wonderful roux sauce over top of the shrimp, and sprinkle on a few cubes of country ham. Enjoy.

 

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: