Shrimp and Grits

Source: WakeMed Health & Hospitals, Raleigh, N.C.
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Main Ingredient: Seafood, Vegetables, Dairy, Cheese, Pork, Greens
Menu Part: Entree
Cuisine Type: American
Serves: Four servings

This signature dish is a favorite at the chef’s station at WakeMed Health & Hospitals. Jessica Marchand, R.D., director of food and nutrition services, says: “Chef Antonio [Alano] substitutes nonfat milk for heavy cream to lower the fat content. He poaches the shrimp and incorporates the flavorful broth instead of creating a butter sauce that comes with the classic preparation. This dish is served with fresh vegetables like baby spinach and fresh diced tomatoes, giving this meal a healthier, yet delicious and unexpected balance.” 

Ingredients

2 tbsp. butter
1 small onion, diced
1 tbsp. minced garlic
1 1/2 cups nonfat milk
8 oz. quick grits
1/2 cup water (if needed)
4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
4 tbsp. butter, cut into 1 tbsp. cubes and kept cold
1/4 cup julienned vegetable blend (red onion, green and yellow bell pepper)
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tbsp. canola oil
8 oz. thinly sliced Andouille sausage
4 oz. bacon bits
12 oz. raw 31-40 shrimp, peeled, deveined
1 cup fresh spinach
4 oz. diced tomatoes

Poaching liquid for shrimp
4 cups water
1 cup white wine
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp. thyme
1 tbsp. oregano
 

Steps

  1. Heat non-stick pan on medium-high. Add butter and allow to melt. Add diced onions; sauté until translucent. Add garlic and sauté lightly.
  2. Add milk and incorporate into mix. Lower heat to medium and add grits slowly, stirring constantly. (Add water if needed.)
  3. When grits are cooked thoroughly, add cheese and stir.
  4. Heat a separate pan on medium-high. Add oil and sausage. Add bacon bits and stir. Add vegetable blend and stir, then add salt.
  5. In medium pot, mix poaching liquid ingredients together and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer; add shrimp and poach until pink and tender.
  6. Spoon grits into bowl. Place fresh spinach on top of grits. Top with shrimp, tomatoes and bacon bits/sausage/vegetable blend mixture.