Mounds of blackened shrimp over creamy corn grits. A little change from the norm by using coarse, stone-ground cornmeal instead of regular white hominy grits. If you prefer your own recipe for cheese grits, go for it!
For The Cheese Grits: Place the milk, water, and salt into a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Once the milk mixture comes to a boil, gradually (add slowly so as not to cause clumping) add the cornmeal while continually whisking. Once all of the cornmeal has been incorporated, decrease the heat to low and cover. Remove lid and whisk frequently to prevent grits from sticking or forming lumps making sure to get into corners of pot when whisking. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until mixture is creamy. While grits are cooking, start preparing the blackened shrimp.
Finish the grits by removing from the heat, adding the black pepper and butter and whisk to combine. Once the butter is melted, gradually whisk in the cheese a little at a time to incorporate.
For the Blackened Shrimp: Preheat a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Meanwhile, put the blackening seasoning in a shallow bowl; set aside. Dip the shrimp in the melted butter shaking off any excess butter before dredging the shrimp in the blackening seasoning. Place a batch of shrimp on the hot skillet (avoid shrimp from touching) and cook each side for about 1 minute or just until the shrimp turns opaque. Remove the shrimp from the pan and keep warm until all the shrimp are cooked. Note: If you go light on the blackening seasoning, you may want to add additional salt. Fry one or two shrimp to taste test.
Divide and place the hot grits in the bottom of four large bowls. Over the grits, evenly divide the hot blackened shrimp. Garnish with cilantro leaves, if desired, and serve immediately.