Do yourself a huge favor and make this soon. Perfect comfort food for fall, a great "date night at home", or just because you feel like being fancy. These shrimp and grits were one of the best meals I've ever made, and it only took right around 30-35 minutes to make.
I started off frying off bacon, both for the topping and grease to fry the shrimp in. Everything is better using bacon grease - pancakes especially. Drain the grease off into a container on the side and move pan off the heat. I used a cast iron skillet for frying but you can use whatever your heart desires.
Once I fried up the bacon, I got started on the grits. The package of grits gives standard directions - 4c water to 1 c grits. In my grits, I used 2 cups milk (2% but any will work) and 2 c chicken stock. This is a magical combination. Bring the 4 c of liquid to a simmer then add 1 cup of grits and 1 clove of garlic chopped -the garlic will soften with the grits. Bring to a boil then immediately lower the temperature to low/med. You want to keep an eye on these stirring frequently, and cooking for about 25 minutes. You will feel them tightening up as you stir. Around 20 minutes in, I covered the grits and let them cook for the last 5 minutes covered up. Remove from heat and add 1/2 c heavy cream and 1 c parmesean cheese (I used grated). You can really use whatever cheese you want. The grits should be thin, but not runny. To keep warm, you can cover or keep on low heat. I stirred in a handful of spinach last that wilted down while I cooked the shrimp.
Last step is to cook your shrimp (takes 3-4 minutes).
The only things I seasoned my shrimp with are Old Bay and tabasco sauce. Generously coat your shrimp - you don't have to add salt or pepper since it is in the Old Bay seasoning already. Pour a little of your reserved bacon grease on the cast iron skillet, and bring heat to medium. Put shrimp on and cook for about 1 1/2 minutes per side or until pink. Make sure not to overcook your shrimp, because they will also cook a little bit longer when you put them in the hot grits.
Toast up a baguette, top with chopped bacon, and dig in!
Grits recipe from Grits and Greens in Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking by Nathalie Dupree
2 c milk
2 c chicken stock
1 garlic clove
1/2 c heavy cream
1 c grated parmesean
1 c yellow grits (I used Weisenberger)
1 c baby spinach
Bring 2c milk and 2c chicken stock to simmer, add grits and garlic. Cook for 25 minutes, stirring frequently. Cover with 5 minutes to go. After 25 minutes, stir in heavy cream and cheese. Add more heavy cream if consistency is too thick. It should be loose but not runny. Add salt to taste if desired. Stir in spinach and set aside.
1 lb 40-50 shrimp - peeled, deveined, tails off, thawed
2 tbsp Old Bay seasoning
1 tbsp tabasco
4 slices thick cut bacon
Cook bacon and reserve grease - drain bacon on paper towel lined plate.
Bring skillet to medium heat with 2 tbsp bacon grease.
Season shrimp with old bay and tabasco
Place on skillet and cook 1 1/2 minutes on each side until pink.
Pour grits into shallow bowl and add cooked shrimp in the center. Top with bacon and serve.
Let me know if you make this soon and how you liked it!