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Shrimp and Grits

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Shrimp and Grits is a classic Southern dish that combines tender shrimp with creamy, savory grits. This comforting and flavorful meal is popular for its hearty flavors and versatility. Here’s how to prepare Shrimp and Grits at home with a recipe that celebrates the rich culinary tradition of the American South.


Ingredients:

For the Shrimp:

  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish

For the Grits:

  • 1 cup stone-ground grits
  • 4 cups water or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

For Serving:

  • Crispy cooked bacon, crumbled (optional)
  • Sliced green onions, for garnish
  • Hot sauce (optional)

Instructions:

1. Prepare the Shrimp:

  1. In a large skillet or frying pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add shrimp to the skillet in a single layer. Season with smoked paprika, Cajun seasoning (if using), salt, and freshly ground black pepper.
  4. Cook shrimp for 2-3 minutes per side, or until they are pink and opaque.
  5. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the shrimp. Remove from heat and set aside.

2. Make the Grits:

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring water or chicken broth to a boil.
  2. Gradually whisk in stone-ground grits, stirring constantly to prevent lumps.
  3. Reduce heat to low and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for about 20-25 minutes or until grits are thickened and creamy.
  4. Stir in heavy cream or milk, unsalted butter, and shredded cheddar cheese until well combined.
  5. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

3. Serve Shrimp and Grits:

  1. Spoon a generous portion of creamy grits onto serving plates or shallow bowls.
  2. Arrange cooked shrimp on top of the grits.
  3. Drizzle any remaining garlic and lemon sauce from the skillet over the shrimp and grits.
  4. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, crumbled crispy bacon (if using), sliced green onions, and a dash of hot sauce if desired.

4. Optional Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve with a side of buttered toast or cornbread.
  • Pair with a crisp white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio, to complement the flavors of the dish.
  • Enjoy as a comforting brunch or dinner option.

Conclusion: Shrimp and Grits is a quintessential Southern dish that combines creamy grits with flavorful, tender shrimp for a satisfying meal. This recipe allows you to recreate the traditional flavors of Shrimp and Grits at home, perfect for sharing with family and friends. Enjoy the creamy texture of the grits paired with the savory goodness of the shrimp with this easy-to-follow recipe.

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Written by Robert Zelesky

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