Time for a recipe! The hustle and bustle of the season got the best of me thus no new recipes?!! Until now!!! And, I’m nursing a rebel tooth. I had forgotten how such can slam you.
This is a family favorite! I just asked son #2 what he wanted for Christmas lunch sorta brunch, knowing full well exactly what he’d say…ham and grits. What was I thinkin’?
Now before you turn your nose up like I did when I first had this dish put in front of me, let’s define grits. Grits=corn, white or yellow. Simple. Grits are processed corn, much like hominy, which was ONE thing I would eat as a kid. Yay me. Typically, in the South, grits are cooked up in water like Cream of Wheat or oatmeal or rice, none of which I would touch with a 10 foot pole. Ever.
Grits are usually served either as a breakfast cereal, using sugar, butter and/or milk in the dish. Ick. Or they’re served as a breakfast side dish. Why I don’t know, but they are. You get grits in the South unless you plead with the waitress to NOT bring you any. I know. I’m speaking heresy. I just ask for a double dose of hash browns!!
But…not we we get to the nitty-gritty of this whole conversation, pun intended. GRITS are heavenly when combined with cheese. Real cheese, not the kind you buy in a box. You know what I’m talking about don’t you? Splash in a bit of Tabasco, some garlic and you have something that will change your life forever! I promise.
This is THE perfect side dish for ham. Or brisket. Or ribs. And it warms up great! Heck, Big Boss just waltzes thru the kitchen, cuts off a hunk of refrigerator grits and runs out the back door. Ewwwww! Cold?!! Yep. (He does the same with cold bread pudding? Yes, he’s from another planet.)
1 ½ cup Instant Grits (look on the aisle where the oatmeal is)
dash of salt
6 cups water
Combine in a large pot. Over med. high heat and stirring constantly, cook till thickens. Once it starts to boil, turn the heat waaaay down! (This stuff likes to blurp out at you, so watch it! I ususally put my frying screen over the top of the pan but you can’t put a lid on it.) To this add:
1 stick butter or margarine
1 lb. cheese…my fav is sharp cheddar, but any cheddar will work. Or CoJack, or some Pepper Jack. The original recipe called for Velveeta, so you can stretch your cheddar with the Vel if you must. But only in an emergency. This is serious comfort food and you need REAL cheese in it. Experiment! Mozarella, Provolone, Swiss?
1 DROP of Tabasco sauce (or to taste!) I’m NOT a Tabasco girl but I always put a drop or two in…for the guys!
2 teaspoon garlic salt (this is a MUST!) If you don’t have garlic salt, garlic powder or freshly minced garlic. But you MUST have garlic!
3 eggs, well beaten
Turn heat off of the grits, add the butter and grated cheese and stir until the cheese melts. Pour a little of the hot cereal into the beaten eggs and stir well. Pour the egg mixture back into the pot of hot grits and stir until combined. Add garlic salt and Tabasco, stirring until the butter melts. Pour into a buttered or sprayed glass casserole dish and sprinkle with paprika. Bake 1 hour at 350°.
Let the grits set to cool and firm up for about 15-30 mins. They will stay VERY hot for a long time and you can slice them up like brownies or…just dig in.
Trust me, if you’re not from the South and have never heard of grits, TRY THIS!! Or if you once tried the grit cereal mush stuff and hated it…forget about the experience and give it another go. You’ll thank me! 🙂