Grits. Just the word has always made me want to rinse out my mouth. I could never understand why anyone would want to eat them…and like them! Until now.
Of course, the key is to cook the cornmeal so it’s not actually gritty. Add in some cheese and seasoning and YUMMMM! I couldn’t stop eating it!
Note: I made this recipe using both coarse-grind cornmeal and polenta (the degerminated enriched kind) to compare. It’s really a toss-up – they both worked well.
Additional note: A flat whisk works really well with this dish – it allows you to get into the corners easily. (Photo below)
CHEESY GRITS – makes 6 cups
- 2 T butter
- 4 T scallions, white part only (about 4 stalks), sliced thin
- 3¼ cups + 1/4 cup water, divided
- 1 cup milk (any kind – I used nonfat)
- 1/2 tsp hot sauce (I used Tabasco)
- 1/2 tsp black ground pepper
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup degerminated polenta or yellow coarse-grind cornmeal (I’ve used both)
- 1/2 cup corn kernels (frozen, fresh, or canned)
- 4 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 4 oz jack cheese, shredded
In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add in scallions and sauté to soften – about 4 minutes. Add in the 3¼ cups water, milk, hot sauce, pepper, and salt. Bring to boil. Whisking continuously, very slowly pour in the polenta (or cornmeal). Decrease heat to maintain a simmer and cook, uncovered, until thickened – about 15 minutes. Stir often, taking care to get into the edges. In a blender, pureé the corn with the remaining 1/4 cup water for about 5 seconds. Pour into the thickened grits, also adding the cheeses, stirring to blend. Cook another 5 minutes or so to thicken. Top servings with scallion green slices, more shredded cheese, and paprika, if desired.