Like she-crab soup, crab cakes, and Hoppin’ John, shrimp and grits are one of my favorite staples of Lowcountry cuisine. There is something special about pairing seafood like shrimp, fish or crawfish with creamy grits. It’s a combination that is both comforting and delicious.
adapted from: Martha Nesbit via FoodNation with Bobby Flay
4 cups water
1 cup stone-ground grits
salt & pepper
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
6 slices bacon, cut into pieces (I used Black Forest bacon)
4 teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 cup thinly sliced scallions, or to taste
1 large clove garlic, minced
Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Whisk in the grits. Reduce heat to low and cook, whisking occasionally (make sure to whisk a lot at the beginning, so you don’t get lumps), until the water is absorbed and the grits are creamy, about 20-25 minutes. If the water has been absorbed, but the grits aren’t tender enough whisk in a little bit of water and continue cooking. Remove from heat and season to taste with salt and pepper (grits need a good bit of seasoning). Stir in the butter and cheese.
While the grits are cooking, rinse the shrimp and pat dry. Fry the bacon in a large skillet until browned, then remove the bacon with a spoon and leave the bacon drippings.. Set aside. In the remaining bacon drippings cook the shrimp until pink, about 60-90 seconds per side. Add the lemon juice, chopped bacon, parsley, scallions, and garlic. Sauté for 3 minutes. Spoon the grits into 4 warmed bowls and top with the shrimp mixture. Serve immediately.