Shrimp and Grits

 

IMG_2668.JPGMy rich and decadent New Orleans-inspired Shrimp and Andouille Sausage with Creamy Parmesan Peppercorn Grits is perfect for your Fat Tuesday–or any day for that matter! This recipe is my attempt to merge the Creole and Cajun food worlds in one dish that will bring peace to your stomach!

Ever wonder what the difference between Creole and Cajun is? You can say it all kinda boils down to this.

Cajun is a word used to describe the French colonists who moved from the Acadia region of Canada down to Louisiana after the British conquest of Acadia (know today as present-day New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia) in the 1700s.

Creole is a term used to describe the people who were born to these new settlers in French colonial Louisiana, especially New Orleans.

The Cajun seasoning, fire-roasted tomatoes and Andouille sausage give this smothered dish an amazing depth of flavor without a extended roux like the extended cooking time of the roux in my gumbo recipe.

And I don’t care what your mama n’em do with their shrimp and grits, but ’round here, we don’t use instant grits! Yeah, I said what I said!

Laissez les bon temps roulez!

 

Southern Shrimp and Grits with Andouille Sausage

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • ½ small bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tablespoons Cajun seasoning, or more to taste (Cajun Lagniappe from Simply Savory by Rachel!)
  • 4 links smoked Andouille sausage links, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 16 ounces good quality chicken broth
  • 1 Knorr chicken bouillon cube
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Kitchen Bouquet browning liquid
  • 1 can (15-ounce) diced fire-roasted tomatoes, DO NOT DRAIN
  • 1 pound large wild-caught shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail removed
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley plus more for garnish

GRITS

  • 2 cups water, or more
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup regular grits
  • Sea salt
  • 1cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper

 

directions

Sear andouille sausage pieces in large heavy skillet over medium-high heat until browned. Add butter and olive oil and stir for 10 seconds.  Add the onion, reduce heat to medium-low and cook 3 to 4 minutes or until beginning to soften.  Add the bell pepper and celery.  Cook until very soft, around 6-7 minutes. Stir in garlic, flour, Cajun seasoning and cayenne and cook briefly (15 seconds), until flour is incorporated into mixture.

Add chicken broth, bouillon cube, browning liquid, bay leaf, salt, pepper, and tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes or until reduced slightly and thickened.

Stir in shrimp and cook 2 to 3 minutes or UNTIL JUST FIRM!  Stir in heavy cream and heat through.  Serve over grits with chopped parsley garnish!

GRITS:  Heat the 2 cups chicken broth and milk in a heavy-bottomed saucepan until just simmering. Stir grits into the simmering water and milk.

Reduce heat to medium low and cover. Cook, stirring often, until the grits are tender to the bite and have thickened to the consistency of thick oatmeal.

15 minutes into stirring, add the cheese. As the grits thicken, stir them more often to keep them from sticking and scorching. You may have to add additional milk and water as needed.

After 25 minutes, Season the grits generously with salt, add pepper to taste, and stir in the cream and butter. Remove from heat and let rest, covered, until serving. Serve hot with shrimp and sausage.

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recipe notes

MAKE AHEAD:  Can be prepared up to two days ahead WITHOUT the shrimp.  Heat on the stovetop and add shrimp JUST before serving.  However, the grits are best prepared shortly before serving, trust me, they do not reheat well!

 

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