Old Charleston-Style Shrimp and Grits
3 cups water
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup coarsely ground grits
2 cups half-and-half
2 pounds uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
salt to taste
1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 medium lemon, juiced
1 pound andouille sausage, cut into 1/4-inch slices
5 slices bacon
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
¼ cup butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
Step 1: Bring water and 2 teaspoons salt to a boil in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat.
Step 2: Whisk grits into the boiling water, and then whisk in half-and-half. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until grits are thickened and tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.
Step 3:Season shrimp with salt and cayenne pepper. Add lemon juice, toss to combine, and set aside to marinate.
Step 4: Place sausage slices in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, 5 to 8 minutes. Remove sausage from the skillet.
Step 5: Add bacon to the same skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until evenly browned, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer bacon to paper towels to drain, then chop or crumble when cool enough to handle. Leave bacon drippings in the skillet.
Step 6: Add bell peppers, onion, and garlic to the bacon drippings; cook and stir until onion is translucent, about 8 minutes.
Step 7: Stir cooked sausage and marinated shrimp into the skillet with the cooked vegetables. Turn off the heat and set aside.
Step 8: Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour, stirring to create a smooth roux. Turn heat to low and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is golden brown in color, 8 to 10 minutes. Watch carefully, mixture burns easily
Step 9: Pour the roux over the sausage, shrimp, and vegetables.
Step 10: Place the skillet over medium heat, add chicken broth, bacon, and Worcestershire sauce, and stir to combine. Cook until sauce thickens up and shrimp turn opaque and bright pink, about 8 minutes.
Step 11: Just before serving, mix Cheddar cheese into grits; stir until cheese is melted and grits are creamy and light yellow.
Step 12: Spoon grits onto plates and serve shrimp mixture over top.
Prep Time: 30 min Cook Time: 45 min