Local ingredients make Michelle's Lowcountry Shrimp and Grits--from freshly-caught shrimp to stone-ground grits with herbs, butter, and "a little love" stirred in. Chef Weaver suggests using Anson Mills grits.
2 cups uncooked white coarse-ground grits
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 pound unpeeled, medium-size raw shrimp (2 8/31 count)
4 thick hickory-smoked bacon slices, diced
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium-size Vidalia onion, diced
1/2 poblano pepper, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup Madeira
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 green onion, chopped
How to Make It
Prepare Grits: Bring 7 cups water to a boil in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Slowly whisk in grits; reduce heat to medium, and cook, whisking constantly, 5 minutes. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, 1 hour or until tender. Fold in cheese and 1/4 cup butter.
Prepare Shrimp Sauce: Peel shrimp; devein, if desired.
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 4 to 5 minutes or until crisp; remove bacon, and drain on paper towels, reserving 2 Tbsp. drippings in skillet.
Melt 6 Tbsp. butter in hot drippings in skillet. Reduce heat. Add onion, poblano pepper, and garlic; sauté 2 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add shrimp; cook, stirring often, 1 to 2 minutes. Add salt and next 2 ingredients; toss to coat.
Sprinkle flour over shrimp mixture; toss. Add broth and next 2 ingredients. Cook just until shrimp turn pink, stirring to loosen particles from skillet. Stir in bacon and parsley. Serve over grits with green onion.
I've searched for hours and hours for a recipe that resembled the most delicious Lowcountry Shrimp and Grits I enjoyed several years ago at Up Your Alley (which unfortunately is no longer there) in Aiken South Carolina. I've tried a few of them with disappointment. FINALLY! This one hits the target! The only thing I changed was to add some juiced, diced tomatoes when the shrimp goes in. DELICIOUS!
I made this for my southern husband, who is a true foodie. It completely changed his opinion of my cooking skills! He and I both now list it as our favorite dish and enjoy it often. I have made it for entertaining as well, and it is a sure hit.
Well, I've eaten some wonderful food all around this big world but this is definitely one of the top. I kid you not. Chef Weaver has accomplished something with Southern comfort food that you experience in very good French cooking--perfect and sublime meshing of flavors. The grits and shrimp are both good enough to stand on their own for any meal but you put them together and the result is magic! Definitely comfort food extraordinaire. Of note, I couldn't find old-fashioned grits at the store so I used the 5-minute kind I normally use.
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