Carolina Shrimp With Creamy Grits

"This is a traditional Southern dish. If you prefer your grits thinner just add a little warm water or warmed milk. Adapted from chef James Clark, executive chef at Palette in Washington, DC."
photo by threeovens photo by threeovens
photo by threeovens
Ready In:
2hrs 20mins
8 appetizers




  • Heat 4 cups water and milk (or half n half or heavy cream) over medium heat to a simmer.
  • Stir in the grits using a wooden spoon; cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes.
  • Reduce heat and cook, stirring (and scraping) frequently, to prevent the grits from sticking, 30 minutes (you probably will need to add additional water).
  • Remove from heat, stir in butter, season with salt and pepper; cover to keep warm.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons bacon drippings in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and caramelized (golden brown), about 25 minutes; remove to a plate and set aside.
  • Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of bacon drippings over medium heat.
  • Season shrimp with pepper and add to skillet; cook for one minute.
  • Add ham and cook another minute; transfer to plate and set aside.
  • Return onions to skillet, add Madeira and simmer about 20 minutes until reduced to less than 1/2 cup; watch carefully because once it starts to reduce it will evaporate very quickly.
  • Add cream and nutmeg, if using, simmer until it reduces by about half again.
  • Return shrimp and ham, add fresh herbs, season with pepper if needed.
  • To serve, divide the grits among individual plates and spoon the shrimp and sauce over the top.

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