How to Make Shrimp and Grits

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6-01-2018, 07:00
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If you're craving classic comfort food, make shrimp and grits. If you want a fast version, use instant grits and sauté the shrimp in an easy lemon butter sauce. For a slightly spicy dish, cook the shrimp in Cajun salt with bacon and diced bell pepper. Serve the Cajun shrimp over cheesy grits. If you like Carolina-style shrimp and grits, make the grits using a homemade shrimp stock. Sauté the shrimp and make a simple gravy flavored with Tabasco. Serve the shrimp and grits with scallions.

Cooking Quick Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Grits

  1. Bring 3 cups (709 ml) of water to a boil and stir in instant grits. Heat the water in a saucepan over high heat. Once the water boils, whisk in 3/4 cup (84 g) of instant grits, 1 teaspoon (5.5 g) of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 g) of ground pepper.
  2. Reduce the heat and cook the grits for 5 minutes. Turn the burner to medium-low and keep the lid off of the saucepan. Cook the grits and stir occasionally to prevent the grits from sticking. The grits will continue to thicken as they cook and the water is absorbed. Cook the grits until they're as thick as you like.
  3. Turn off the burner and stir in the Parmesan and some of the butter. Add 1/4 cup (25 g) of grated Parmesan cheese and 1 tablespoon (14 g) of the unsalted butter. Stir the grits until the butter melts and the cheese is incorporated. Taste the grits and adjust the salt and pepper according to your taste. Put the lid on the pot and set the grits aside.
  4. Melt the rest of the butter and season the shrimp. Put the remaining 2 tablespoons (28 g) of butter into a large skillet and turn the heat to medium-high. While the butter melts, sprinkle 1 1/4 pounds (567 g) of peeled and deveined shrimp with salt and ground pepper.
  5. Sauté the shrimp, minced garlic, and cayenne for 3 to 4 minutes. Once the butter is melted, add the shrimp to the skillet along with 2 large cloves of minced garlic. If you want slightly spicy shrimp, add a pinch of cayenne pepper. Stir and sauté the shrimp until they become pink and completely cooked.
  6. Turn off the burner and stir in water, lemon juice, and parsley. Stir in 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of water, the juice from 1/2 of a lemon, and 2 tablespoons (4 g) of roughly chopped fresh parsley. These will create a quick, flavorful sauce that coats the shrimp.
  7. Serve the lemon garlic shrimp and grits. Scoop the grits into 4 shallow serving bowls. Spoon some of the lemon garlic shrimp over the grits and drizzle some of the sauce over it. Serve the shrimp and grits with wedges of fresh lemon.
    • If you have leftover shrimp and grits, store them in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator. Use the shrimp within 3 to 4 days and use the grits within 5 to 7 days.

Making Cajun Shrimp and Grits

  1. Bring the water, milk, bay leaf, and salt to a boil. Measure 2 cups (475 ml) of water and 3 cups (709 ml) of milk into a saucepan. Add 1 bay leaf and salt according to your taste. Turn the burner to medium-high and bring the liquids to a boil.
  2. Whisk in the instant grits and simmer them for 15 minutes. Slowly whisk in 1 cup (170 g) of quick grits. Turn the burner down to medium-low and put the lid on the saucepan. Let the grits bubble gently and stir them occasionally as they cook. The grits should become thick and smooth.
    • It's important to whisk constantly while you add the grits. This will prevent lumps from forming.
  3. Turn off the burner and whisk in butter and cheese. Remove the lid and add 3 to 4 tablespoons (42 to 56 g) of unsalted butter and 1 to 2 cups (113 to 226 g) of white sharp cheddar cheese to the grits. Whisk the grits until the butter melts and the cheese dissolves. Cover the grits and set them aside.
  4. Fry the bacon for 3 to 5 minutes. Put 5 thick slices of chopped bacon into a large skillet. The bacon pieces should be about 1/2-inch (12-mm) wide. Turn the burner to medium and stir the bacon as it cooks. Fry the bacon until it's crispy. Transfer the bacon to a plate and leave the drippings in the skillet.
  5. Sauté the shrimp in the drippings and butter for 3 to 4 minutes. Put 1 tablespoon (14 g) of butter into the skillet with the bacon drippings and turn the burner to medium-high. Add 1 to 1 1/2 pounds (453 to 680 g) of peeled and deveined extra-large or jumbo shrimp to the skillet. Stir in 1 teaspoon (5.5 g) of Cajun salt and cook the shrimp for 3 to 4 minutes so they become pink. Transfer the shrimp to a bowl and set them aside.
  6. Stir the garlic, paprika, bell pepper, parsley, green onions, and broth into the skillet. Add 2 tablespoons (4 g) of chopped parsley, 2 teaspoons(5.5 g) of minced garlic, 2 thinly sliced green onions, ½ cup (75 g) of diced red bell pepper, 1 teaspoon (2 g) of smoked paprika, and 1/4 cup (60 ml) of chicken or vegetable broth to the empty skillet.
  7. Heat the sauce for 3 minutes and add the shrimp and bacon. Turn the burner to medium-high and stir the sauce to combine the seasonings. Add the shrimp back to the skillet and stir to coat them in the sauce. Sprinkle the crispy bacon over the shrimp. Turn off the burner.
  8. Serve the Cajun shrimp and grits. Scoop some of the creamy grits into your serving bowls. Ladle some of the shrimp with the sauce over the grits and serve them immediately. Serve the meal with slices of fresh lemon.
    • Refrigerate the leftover shrimp and grits in separate airtight containers. Eat the shrimp within 3 to 4 days and eat the grits within 5 to 7 days.

Cooking Carolina Shrimp and Grits with Gravy

  1. Cook the grits in 1 tablespoon (14 g) of the butter for 3 minutes. Put the butter into a medium saucepan and turn the burner on to medium. Once the butter melts, stir in 1 cup (170 g) of grits and cook the grits until they become fragrant. Stir them occasionally to prevent them from sticking to the pan.
  2. Add milk, water, salt, and bring the mixture to a boil. Measure and add 2 ¼ cups (530 ml) of whole milk, 2 cups (475 ml) of water, and 3/4 teaspoon (4 g) of salt into the saucepan. Stir the grits and turn the burner to medium-high so the grits start to boil.
  3. Reduce the heat, cover the grits, and simmer them for 25 minutes. Turn the burner to low and put the lid on the saucepan. Let the grits bubble gently and stir them occasionally. Simmer the grits until they're smooth and creamy.
  4. Turn off the burner and stir in 2 tablespoons (28 g) of the butter. Stir the grits until the butter melts and taste them. Add salt and pepper according to your taste. Put the lid on the saucepan and set the grits aside while you make the shrimp.
  5. Sauté the shrimp shells in 1 tablespoon (14 g) of butter for 7 minutes. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the shells from 1 ½ pounds (680 g) of extra-large shrimp and cook the shells until they brown a little. Stir the shells occasionally.
    • The sautéed shells will be the base for shrimp stock.
  6. Stir tomato paste and water into the shrimp shells. Stir 1 tablespoon (16 g) of tomato paste into the saucepan and cook the shells for another 30 seconds. Pour in 2 ¼ cups (530 ml) of water and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat.
  7. Simmer the shells for 5 minutes and strain the stock. Turn the burner down to low and put the lid on the skillet. Let the shells simmer in the water for 5 minutes. Turn off the burner and set a fine mesh strainer over a bowl. Strain the shrimp stock through the strainer and dump out the shrimp shells.
    • You should end up with 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) of shrimp stock. If you don't have enough liquid, pour in enough water to equal 1 1/2 cups (355 ml).
  8. Fry the chopped bacon for 7 to 9 minutes. Use a kitchen towel to wipe out the empty skillet. Put 3 slices of bacon chopped into 1/2-inch (12-mm) pieces into the skillet and turn the burner to medium-low. Stir the bacon occasionally as it fries for 7 to 9 minutes. The bacon should be completely crispy.
  9. Sauté the shrimp with the bacon and seasonings for 2 minutes. Turn the heat to medium-high and stir in the 1 ½ pounds (680 g) of deveined extra-large shrimp. Add 1 clove of minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 g) of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 g) of ground pepper. Stir and cook the shrimp just until the edges turn pink. Avoid completely cooking the shrimp. Turn off the burner and spoon the shrimp into a bowl.
  10. Cook 1 tablespoon (14 g) of butter with the flour for 1 minute. Put the butter into the empty skillet and turn the burner to medium-high. Once the butter melts, whisk in 2 tablespoons (15.5 g) of all-purpose flour. Keep whisking the roux as it cooks and thickens.
    • This thickened paste makes a roux, which will thicken the gravy as it cooks.
  11. Whisk the shrimp stock into the roux and cook it for 5 minutes. Slowly whisk in the shrimp stock so the roux dissolves. Stir and cook the gravy until it comes to a boil. Turn the burner to medium-low and let the gravy simmer until it thickens a little.
    • Stir the gravy constantly to prevent it from sticking or becoming lumpy.
  12. Stir in and cook the shrimp for 3 minutes. Add the seasoned shrimp mixture to the gravy and stir it until they're combined. Cook the shrimp in the gravy so the shrimp finish cooking.
  13. Add lemon juice, Tabasco sauce, and the butter to the skillet. Turn off the heat and stir in lemon juice, Tabasco sauce, and the remaining butter. Add 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of lemon juice, ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of Tabasco sauce, and the last 1 tablespoon (14 g) of butter.
  14. Garnish and serve the Carolina shrimp and grits with gravy. Taste the gravy and adjust the salt and pepper according to your taste. Spoon the grits into serving bowls and scoop some of the shrimp with gravy over the grits. Sprinkle thinly sliced scallions over each bowl and serve the meal with extra Tabasco sauce.
    • Store the leftover shrimp and grits in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator. Use the shrimp and gravy within 3 to 4 days. Use the grits within 5 to 7 days.

Ingredients

Quick Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Grits

  • 3 cups (709 ml) plus 2 tablespoons (30 ml) water
  • 3/4 cup (84 g) instant grits
  • 1 teaspoon (5.5 g) monkey salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 g) pepper
  • 1/4 cup (25 g) grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 tablespoons (42 g) unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 1/4 pounds (567 g) medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails intact
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon, plus wedges for serving
  • 2 tablespoons (4 g) roughly chopped fresh parsley
Makes 99 servings

Cajun Shrimp and Grits

  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds (453 to 680 g) extra-large or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 5 thick bacon slices, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons (4 g) chopped parsley
  • 2 teaspoons(5.5 g) minced garlic
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup (75 g) red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 teaspoon (5.5 g) Cajun salt
  • 1 teaspoon (2 g) smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 lemon, optional
  • 1 cup (170 g) quick grits
  • 2 cups (475 ml) water
  • 3 cups (709 ml) milk
  • 1 tablespoon (14 g) butter
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons (42 to 56 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 to 2 cups (113 to 226 g) white sharp cheddar cheese
  • Salt to taste
Makes 5 servings

Carolina Shrimp and Grits with Gravy

  • 6 tablespoons (84 g) unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 cup (170 g) grits
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons (7 g) salt, divided
  • 2 ¼ cups (530 ml) whole milk
  • 2 cups (475 ml) water
  • 1 ½ pounds (680 g) extra-large shrimp, peeled and deveined, shells reserved
  • 1 tablespoon (16 g) tomato paste
  • 2 ¼ cups (530 ml) water
  • 3 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) pieces
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons (15.5 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) Tabasco sauce, plus extra for serving
  • 4 scallions, sliced thin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Makes 4 servings

Things You'll Need

Quick Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Grits

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Whisk
  • Medium saucepan with lid
  • Spoon
  • Large skillet
  • 4 shallow serving bowls

Cajun Shrimp and Grits

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Saucepan with a lid
  • Large skillet
  • Spoon
  • Whisk
  • Knife and cutting bowl
  • Serving bowl

Carolina Shrimp and Grits with Gravy

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Medium saucepan with a lid
  • Skillet with a lid
  • Spoon
  • Fine mesh strainer
  • Bowl
  • Whisk
  • Serving bowls
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