Southern Cuisine at Home: Shrimp & Grits

shrimp and gritsI am not from the south, but I love southern cuisine. It is not easy to replicate all of my favorites at home since I’ve never had anyone actually teach me how to cook southern food. Instead I just find recipes online and recreate them to my liking. Recently I brought home a big bag of fresh shrimp and decided to make Shrimp & Grits. This classic southern dish can be made any number of ways so I set about trying my own version using the grits in my cabinet and the offerings of my refrigerator. The result were a bowl of creamy, cheesy grits topped with shrimp that has been cooked in a light sauce of butter, white whine, lemon and garlic. It made for a perfectly delicious southern meal in my decidedly northeastern kitchen.

Shrimp & Grits

1 pound fresh shrimp, trimmed and deveined with tails on

3 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup white wine

Juice of 2 lemons

3 cloves garlic, minced

Chopped parsley for garnish

Grits or Polenta

1 cup Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup whole milk

1. Cook the grits or polenta according to package directions. 5 minutes before the end of cooking time stir in the milk and Parmesan cheese and remove from heat. The grits should be thick and creamy.

2. In a large skillet over medium heat melt the butter with the garlic. Cook the garlic for about two minutes, then add the white wine and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the shrimp to the pan with the lemon juices and saute the shrimp, gently turning them with a wooden spoon so that they cook evenly, until they are just cooked through. About 5 minutes.

3. Spoon the grits into bowls and top with the shrimp. Then garnish each bowl with parsley and serve.

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