Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Grits

The Good Ole' South, home of Low-Country Foods and the classic, Shrimp and Grits.  I remember it like it was yesterday, my sister took me down to Charleston, SC.  We tried our best to hit every popular tourist place (Hyman's Seafood Restaurant, The Market, Rainbow Row, etc.) and a few local yokel places we were privy to (Vendue's Inn's Rooftop Cocktail Bar).  But it was at a quaint cafe on Meeting Street, I experienced my first bite of creamy succulent goodness that I will never forget.  Since that time I have had my fair share of Shrimp and Grits, I am from the South.  Some prepared it a little different than others but the one thing they all have in common is one spoonful after another of creamy deliciousness.  I know some of you are going to scream at me when you read the ingredients below.  I can hear it now, "Instant Grits, WHAT, she is definitely not from the South."  Stone-ground grits are a true grit lover's choice but when time is an issue and I'm hungry for something comforting, quick, and easy without sacrificing the taste the Shrimp and Grits recipe below has yet to disappoint.  Go ahead, try it! - TMT 

Photos by Sarah Puwalowski 
Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Grits

3/4 cup instant grits
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/4 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails intact
2 large cloves garlic, minced
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon, plus wedges for serving
2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat, covered. Uncover and slowly whisk in the grits, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the Parmesan and 1 tablespoon butter. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper. Cover to keep warm.

Meanwhile, season the shrimp with salt and pepper.  Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the shrimp, garlic and cayenne and cook, tossing, until the shrimp are pink, 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and add 2 tablespoons water, the lemon juice and parsley; stir to coat the shrimp with the sauce and season with salt and pepper.

Divide the grits among shallow bowls and top with the shrimp and sauce.  Serve with lemon wedges.

Serves 4

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