Hello and welcome to Thursday! How’s your day going? Good I hope! I previewed this recipe a little on my Instagram age last night (@livinginsugar.blog) because hearing bacon sizzle is my happy place. #imiright
Anyway, if you’re looking for a quick and easy week night meal, you’ve come to the right place! Southern Shrimp & Grits. Delicious. And if you’re not a *grit* fan — after this recipe you will be. Trust.
So this dinner comes together super fast and the melody of flavors — ugh. It just takes me back to my childhood.
For those that don’t know, I consider myself a southerner — born in Texas but settled in northern Florida for my adolescent years. Also having been raised by parents from Georgia, I’ve eaten Grits my entire life.
Now in the south, grits are usually white hominy corn, ground fine and served with salt and butter. Grits are basically just a conveyance for salt and butter into your body. Amazing.
Now, while I wouldn’t advocate for eating them everyday — this recipe is a great excuse to get a little bit of grits in your life!
So lets get to it!
Here’s what you’ll need:
For the Grits:
- 4 Cups Water
- 1 Cup Grits (I used Quaker Grits)
- 1/4 Cup butter
- 2-3 tsp Salt
- 1/2 Cup of Sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (as desired)
For the Shrimps:
- 1 Pound med-large raw shrimp; peeled & deveined
- 4-6 pieces of center-cut bacon
- 1/4 Red Onion; Chopped
- 5-6 Garlic Gloves; Chopped
- 3 tsp Fresh Parsley; Chopped
- 1/2 of a Lemon
- 1 tsp red pepper flake
- 1 tsp salt
Begin by cooking the Grits. Follow the directions of whatever brand you choose, but most likely it will look something like this:
Bring 4 Cups of water to a boil. Add 1 tsp of salt and whisk 1 Cup of Grits into the briskly boiling water. Reduce heat to low and cover, simmering for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once grits are creamy and absorbed the water, add 1/4 cup unsalted butter and salt to taste. Whisk to incorporate.
At this point, you can add a 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese if you would like to make cheesy grits — this is completely optional, but a delicious addition. My husband likes his grits this way, but I usually don’t (what can I say, I’m a purist) — which is why you wont see them in the pictures. I usually serve myself and then add cheese to the remainder of the grits for him.
*Tip: Whisking, instead of stirring, the Grits will put air into the grits making the light and fluffy.*
While the grits are cooking, prep the ingredients for the Shrimp portion of the dish. (I used frozen shrimp, so I defrosted them in the sink before starting the grits) But as this is a fast dish, you’ll want to have everything prepped (i.e. chopped) and ready to go into the pan.
Just as the grits are finishing cooking (you can turn the heat off on the grits after about 20 minutes and they will stay warm) begin cooking the bacon in a heavy skillet (I used cast-iron) over medium heat. You want to use enough bacon to have some of the grease in the bottom of the pan, about 2 tablespoons. This is about 6 rashers of bacon for me, but depending on the type of bacon that you use, this may be different.
Once the bacon is cooked and rendered the fat, remove it from the pan and set aside on some paper towels to drain.
Next, lower the heat to low and add the garlic and red pepper flakes to the bacon fat and cook for about 30 seconds. Follow with the thawed shrimp. (pro-tip: pat off any excess moisture on the shrimp to minimize popping in the pan).
Cook the shrimp for 1-2 minutes, until they start to turn opaque and pink. Turn off the heat and add lemon juice (half of a lemon squeezed into the pan), the chopped parsley, salt to taste and lastly, crumble in the cooked bacon. Stir to combine and heat everything through.
Serve over the grits and enjoy!
Southern food at its finest. Are you a grit believer yet??