Mmmm, Mmm. . . That’s Good Cookin’!

While in Savannah in February, I was sitting next to my sister, who had a big plate of delicious shrimp and grits in front of her. I’d had them before, so I knew they were good, but she just shook her head. “They’re not as good as Dad’s. You have to get him to make some for you.” She knew I was coming back for spring break, and I think she reminded me three more times to make sure that homemade Shrimp and Grits were on the menu. When I ate them, I finally understood. They were really good. And yes, I know: you probably won’t be buying the shrimp right off the boat like Dad was. But if you make these I bet they’ll still be delicious.

Shrimp and Grits

4 cups water
Salt & pepper
1 cup stone ground grits
3 T butter
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 lb. shrimp, peeled & deveined
6 slices bacon, fried & chopped
Optional: sliced, cooked Chorizo or Andouille sausage
4 t lemon juice
2 T chopped parsley
1 cup thinly sliced scallions
1 large clove garlic, minced

 

Bring water to a boil.  Add salt and pepper.  Add grits and cook until water is absorbed, about 20-25 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in butter and cheese.
Rinse shrimp and pat dry.
Fry bacon in a large skillet until browned.  Remove bacon from pan and crumble when cool.
Drain fat from skillet leaving 2 tablespoons.
Return chopped bacon and add sliced sausage along with lemon juice, parsley, scallions and garlic.  Sauté for 3 minutes to blend flavors.
Add shrimp and cook till pink—do not overcook.
Spoon grits into a serving bowl.  Add shrimp mixture and mix well.  Serve immediately.
The other Southern classic that Dad made was Crab Cakes, and for these, he followed a recipe from Southern Living. They’d actually made a double batch the last time, so the ones we ate were frozen and thawed before frying, but they were still scrumptious.

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