I feel like most folks who love grits grew up eating them. I however did not. In fact, I had never even tried grits until a year or two ago and only had good grits this past February when we visited New Orleans. I’m not sure what possessed me to give them another go since my first encounter was rather unpleasant, but I’m glad I did because whooooeeeeee, I fell in looooove.
Since then, I’ve been honing my grit making skills at home and have learned two very important things. 1. good grits are made with heavy cream, and 2. good savory grits are made with heavy cream and chicken stock. If you remember those two points you’ll have no trouble impressing friends and family with your new found grit preparing finesse.
These Cheesy Grits are a great side dish when you’re tired of potatoes, and (I’m told) go amazingly with a pile of buttery garlic shrimp. Sadly, I’m allergic to shrimp, but my husband assures me the combination is heavenly. One of my favorite parts about traveling is getting to see the differences in food culture throughout the country. We’re headed on another major road trip next month and are hoping to hit North Carolina, Michigan, Illinois, and Tennessee I’m so excited and ready to be inspired!
Is there a dish you discovered while traveling that became a favorite?
Cheesy Grits (and Shrimp), Ingredients:
- 3 cups chicken stock or broth
- 1 cup 5 minute grits
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon seasoned salt
- 2 cups finely shredded cheese (I used a blend of cheddar and monterey jack)
- 1 pound raw shrimp, peeled/deveined
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
Cheesy Grits (and Shrimp), Directions:
- In a large pan bring chicken stock to a rolling boil. Slowly pour in grits, while stirring constantly (if you just dump it in you’ll get a giant nasty clump)
- Reduce heat to low and continue stirring until grits thicken. Pour in cream and mix well.
- When grits have thickened again and are heated through, stir in cheese.
- optional shrimp:
- In a large skillet or wok, bring butter and garlic to a simmer. Stir for a minute or two until garlic is fragrant.
- Toss in shrimp and cook until they are pink and opaque. Do not overcook.
- Serve over cheesy grits and enjoy!
If you don’t have the time or inclination to make your own chicken stock, store bought works just fine! Using chicken stock in place of water elevates the flavor and makes it so much more rich and robust. It’s easy to make delicious Campbell’s recipes with Swanson Broth giving it an extra boost of flavor. And, I love that Campbell’s new Swanson Broth containers have a measuring strip and a screw cap for simple measuring and easy storage!