With Cajun spice and a buttery taste, this Louisiana Shrimp and Roasted Corn Grits elevates plain ol’ shrimp and grits to an art form. With a blast of heat and a burst of flavor it fires on all cylinders.
Shrimp and grits. I’ve been dreaming of shrimp and grits. Not sure why. It’s not even a part of my culinary repertoire, but other than fried chicken, there is no dish that reflects the Deep South more than shrimp and grits. With its origins in the Carolinas, it is interpreted in various forms throughout the South.
Maybe it’s because of Zea. Greg Reggio’s Zea is a favorite restaurant of mine, and a signature of his menu is an incredible roasted corn grits dish–my favorite. While they have never released the exact recipe there are many copycat versions online and I intend to up the ante. I believe the Zea recipe can be enhanced by adding the richness of fresh eggs and creamy cheese.
With this recipe for Louisiana Shrimp and Roasted Corn Grits, I set out on my quest to recreate a classic, add a twist or two along the way and interpret my version of shrimp and grits. Shrimp is the easy part. With the abundance of large head-on Louisiana Gulf shrimp, I can’t go wrong. I decided to combine two classics here and barbecue the shrimp in a decadent spicy butter sauce. And for the grits, I went to the nearest possible source for stone ground corn grits–Louisiana Pride Grist Mill in Tangipahoa Parish. These guys grow their own corn and produce high quality yellow corn grits.
Make this Louisiana Shrimp and Roasted Corn Grits tonight and discover shrimp and grits in a whole new way.
- 4 ears fresh yellow corn on the cob
- 8 tablespoons softened butter, divided
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 cups yellow stone ground grits
- Chicken stock
- 2 cups half and half, divided
- Kosher salt
- White pepper
- Dash of hot sauce
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 4 pounds fresh jumbo, head-on, shell-on Louisiana shrimp
- 4 sticks of unsalted butter (1 stick per pound of shrimp)
- 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup granulated garlic powder
- 1 cup freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large sprigs fresh rosemary, stemmed and chopped
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce
- Zest of 1 large lemon
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- Sprigs of fresh rosemary, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
- Shuck the corn and slow roast on a low open flame grill or a hot skillet. Once you begin to see browned kernels of the corn, it is done. Take a sharp knife and slice the corn from the cob a layer at the time finally getting down to the cob. Scrape the cob with the back of the blade to extract all of the milk from the corn.
- In a large skillet on medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter and sauté the onions until translucent and add the corn kernels along with the garlic and continue cooking until done. Turn off the heat and set aside.
- Make the grits according to your package directions, but make sure to use chicken stock instead of water. Make the grits to a stiff consistency, add 1 cup of the half and half along with the corn, onions and garlic. Cook on low until the grits combine and reach a thick consistency. Taste the grits and add salt and white pepper along with a couple of shakes of hot sauce to your desired taste level. Let cool to almost room temperature.
- Beat the 4 eggs and add to the grits mixture, stirring vigorously to incorporate quickly. Add the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and stir. At this point the mixture should be creamy and not too stiff. If the mixture is too hard start adding half and half from the reserved one cup stirring until you have a loose thickness. Add 4 tablespoons of softened butter to a casserole dish and coat the bottom and sides. Add the grits.
- Bake the grits uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes and watch closely until it browns slightly on top. Cover and keep warm for serving.
- Preheat oven to 400ºF.
- In a large cake pan or large aluminum foil roasting pan, add the head-on shrimp and place the sticks of butter among the shrimp. Drizzle the Worcestershire sauce around the shrimp along with an even distribution of garlic powder, black pepper, rosemary, lemon juice and hot sauce. Add the lemon zest and salt. Put the pan in the oven and once the butter melts remove the pan and stir the shrimp making sure they are covered in the spicy butter.
- Bake for another 10 or 15 minutes until done. Test the largest shrimp for doneness and remove from the oven and keep warm.
- To plate the dish, serve a portion of the grits with the head-on Louisiana shrimp and all the buttery juices surrounding. Garnish with a sprig of fresh rosemary and serve with lots of crusty French bread.
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