At Castaways Raw Bar and Grill on Holden Beach in North Carolina, they serve up huge portions of spicy shrimp and grits. This version is inspired by theirs—zesty with green onions and tasso ham, with a generous dose of Cajun spice.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add tasso; sauté 2 minutes or until edges are golden. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add shrimp to pan, sprinkle with Cajun seasoning, and cook 3 minutes, turning once. Add 1/4 cup water, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Remove from heat; add butter, stirring to melt. Cover and keep warm.
Bring milk, salt, and 2 cups water to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat. Gradually add grits, and cook until thick and bubbly (about 5 minutes), stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove grits from heat; add cheese, stirring with a whisk until cheese melts.
Spoon grits evenly onto 6 plates. Top evenly with shrimp, ham mixture, and green onions.