Lately I’ve sort of been in a cooking slump. I don’t know if it was the end of the semester busyness or the holiday season or just plain laziness, but I feel like I haven’t made a “real” meal in weeks. Luckily I finally found some inspiration and spent some time in the kitchen on Thursday night making Crook’s Corner Shrimp and Grits, originally from Southern Living magazine.
Since it was my first time making this recipe, I stuck as close to the original instructions as I could. I was thrilled that I had almost all of the ingredients on hand; I only needed to purchase mushrooms. I substituted vegetable broth for the chicken, milk for the half-and-half and yellow onion for the green onion. I also used (defrosted) frozen, pre-cooked shrimp, but didn’t treat them any differently in the recipe. Timing the shrimp and the grits to be finished at the same time was a little tricky–I choose to start with cooking the bacon and prepping everything else before starting the grits–but it worked out with a little help from Brian.
I don’t have a lot of shrimp and grits experience, but this recipe brought me back to eating authentic southern food at a restaurant in Virginia with my Brian, his brother and sister-in-law last Christmas. The grits were far richer and creamier than the polenta I usually make, even when I add cheese. The shrimp and mushroom mixture resulted in a great sauce that came together without me even trying.
I wilted some Swiss chard as a healthy side for the rich dish. This recipe did make the promised 4 servings, which was perfect because I love leftovers. The grits required a extra milk and water to get them back to the appropriate texture this evening, but otherwise it warmed up well. I’m looking forward to making this dish again soon; I think it would be a great meal to make for guests at some point.