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Comforting main or side-dish made rich with tomato pesto and goat cheese and baked in individual casseroles. The original recipe called for twice the butter and whipping cream rather than fat free half and half, so if you can afford the calories, go for it. Oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes (1/2 cup diced) may be substituted for the pesto. Recipe makes 2 main-dish servings or 4 side-dishes.
- 2 1⁄4 cups chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1⁄2 cup quick-cooking hominy grits (3 ounces)
- 3⁄4 cup fat-free half-and-half
- 2 1⁄2 ounces sun-dried tomato pesto (about 1/3 cup)
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped or 1⁄4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 4 ounces crumbled soft goat cheese (about 1 cup)
- chopped fresh chives (to garnish)
- Preheat oven to 350°; spray two 2 cup single-serving casseroles or baking dishes with cooking spray.
- Bring stock, butter and garlic to a boil; whisk in grits gradually until bubbling; reduce heat to moderately low, cover and simmer for 8 minutes, whisking frequently.
- Whisk in 1/2 cup half-and-half and simmer another 5 minutes, whisking frequently; add remaining half-and-half and simmer another 5 minutes,whisking often, until very thick.
- Stir in pesto and thyme; scatter the goat cheese over the surface and bake 15 minutes, until cheese softens; garnish with chives and serve immediately.