All I can say is, WOW! Admittedly, I have been living in the South for a little over seven years now, and have yet to try Shrimp and Grits. So, when The Carolina Meat & Fish Co. started stocking grits from Geechie Boy Mill, I just had to try and create a recipe! Although, I am not a true born Southerner, this recipe turned out amazing!
Honestly, I did not think I would enjoy the texture of the stone-ground grits. As a child, I recall one of my friend’s mother making us grits for breakfast. Needless to say, it was not a very welcoming experience. However, that was not the case today. If you are local to Charlotte, head on over to the fish market and grab a pound of super fresh North Carolina Shrimp, and a bag of these amazing grits.
HOW TO PREPARE SHRIMP AND GRITS
Heat up a cast iron pan. Add in the diced bacon and allow to crisp up. As your bacon is frying, place the shrimp in a freezer bag or bowl. Feel free to use shell-on. In my opinion, there was less mess involved with peeled and deveined. The tail-on added enough flavor. Season the shrimp with Old Bay, Cajun seasoning, paprika, kosher salt and black pepper. Reserve in fridge.
In a separate pot, bring the chicken stock to a boil. Add in the grits, butter, heavy whipping cream and kosher salt. Stir.
Allow the pot to come back to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover. Continue to stir often. This process will take at least 20 to 25 minutes for the grits to be fully cooked. Once the bacon is crisp, remove from pan. Drain on paper towels to remove any excess fat. Be sure to reserve a few tablespoons of the bacon fat to prepare the shrimp.
When the grits are at the perfect consistency, fold in the cheddar and cream cheese. Taste for salt. If needed, add in a touch of heavy whipping cream.
In the cast iron pan with the bacon fat, sear the shrimp on both sides. This will only take a few minutes. Do NOT overcook your shrimp.
TO SERVE THE SHRIMP AND GRITS
Transfer the grits to a large bowl. Top with the beautiful shrimp. Garnish with the crisp bacon pieces and fresh chopped parsley. Serve immediately. Drizzle the entire dish with the drippings from the pan in which you seared the shrimp! Hope you ENJOY my very Southern recipe for Shrimp and Grits.
Serve this dish as an appetizer. Plate the Shrimp and Grits on mini cast iron pans!
For a somewhat different take on my Shrimp and Grits, be sure to check out my recipe for Seared Scallops with a Corn Purée. Although this dish may look super fancy, it’s so super easy to prepare. Believe me, on your table within fifteen minutes from prep to plate!
SOUTHERN COOKING IDEAS
Now that I am basically a Southerner (HAHA), I have been having a ton of fun cooking up some amazing Southern dishes. Check these out:
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