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Shrimp and Grits is quite possibly my favorite lowcountry meal. Creamy, smooth grits topped with fresh shrimp, and flavored with a sauce with lots of bacon and green onion, and a little (or lot of) spice.
There are many different variations on the classic shrimp and grits. This delicious one-dish meal started as a simple breakfast for fishermen and it has evolved into something a little more refined. You’ll see it on the menu of fine dining establishments throughout the south.
But invariably, shrimp and grits is and should be a simple, easy, and flavorful dish.
Stone-ground grits are one of the keys to really good shrimp and grits. I use these grits . You can also use quick grits, but avoid instant grits like the plague. Stone-ground grits are coarser than other types of grits as they are produced the old-fashioned way, by grinding with a water-turned stone. Different brands of stone-ground grits have different cooking times, some taking up to 60 minutes. It’s best to go by the cooking time on the package. As a general rule, you want to cook them a little longer than the recommended time to achieve supreme creaminess.
I like to cook grits in a mixture of water and milk, add a touch of butter at the end, and mix in some cheese. What type of cheese I mix in is usually determined by what I have on hand. Just about any type of cheese will complement the flavor of grits.
The other key to delicious shrimp and grits is using fresh shrimp, or at least good quality frozen shrimp (not farm-raised shrimp from halfway around the world.) We’re lucky that we live fairly close to the coast (although I would prefer to live much closer) and we probably eat our weight in shrimp every time we head to the coast. There’s nothing like them.