Monday, June 11, 2012

Grits, Y'all!

Missy, here. (Yeah, no way it was going to be Ruthy!)

You, too, can have amazing grits to go with your shrimp (see Friday's yummy photos!) or with your eggs and bacon. For me, the trick is buying a good brand of yellow grits (not quick cook). And using cream or half-and-half to make them.

I chose grits from Lakeside Mills (in North Carolina). And I happened to have lowfat half-and-half on hand, so it cut a bit on calories.

You can see here (below) how the grits keep their corn flavor. They're coarsely ground and tasty! I love the texture. If you've ever been to a mill, you see how they're literally stone ground corn.

When I make grits, I just follow the package directions. But instead of cooking in water as directed, I cook them in half water, half cream.

I made 8 servings. So it called for 1 cup grits, 4 cups water. I used 2 cups of half-and-half, 2 cups water. Even though they're not quick-cook, they still cook fairly quickly. Like 5-6 minutes. So you can have grits any time for breakfast or as a side dish (maybe stir in a little grated cheese for a side dish).

Now, I grew up in Kentucky (born in the mountains of Eastern KY, raised in the southwestern part of the state). And we always ate butter and sugar on our grits for breaksfast. Then I moved to Georgia.

The first time my co-workers saw me put sugar on my grits during break, their eyeballs about popped out of their heads!

They promptly told me that grits were to be eaten with salt and pepper. I was skeptical, but I tried it. And now that's the only way I have them!

So, what's your vote?? Salt or sugar? And if you've never eaten grits before, are you willing to be brave and try? :)


  1. Never had grits not sure I would want to try them either. It just sounds like something you shouldn't eat. to me grit is the stuff that gets in your shoes etc.

  2. It cut a bit on calories????? Pshaw. Pshaw. Pshaw. That's like me pretendin' that potatoes and rice are low-cal after I use half the butter/oil I normally do, LOL!

    BUT... having said that. I need to make me some grits so I can see if anyone north of Mason/Dixon will start the Southern trend of eatin' on the darn things.

    You may get me to love grits, I'm not sayin' "never"... but do not try to get me to love "Scrapple" or Tofu.

    Off limits, off limits, off limits!

    I wonder if we even carry grits like this up here???? Must ask Grocery Guru Dave.

  3. And I watched Paula Deen making grits for breakfast last week and she talked about the great debate...

    Not Obama vs. Romney...

    Fork vs. Spoon.

    If the grits are thicker and drier they're fork grits. (I would probably prefer those to mush) If they're like cream of wheat (why oh why would anyone DO that to corn??? I love me some corn!!!) then they're "spoon" grits. Is this true, Missy??? Is it a battle zone? Inquiring minds want to know!

  4. Hey did you see in the pic of the grits in the saucepan there is a heart in it?

    runs off to google Scrapple. better google mush (isn't that what you say to huskies when sleighing in Alaska?)

    Mental note before visiting my friend in Georgia check if she feeds visitors grits.

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  6. LOLOL, Jenny!!! I just laughed out loud when I read about grits being the stuff in your shoes. :) Hubby just asked me what I'm in here laughing about. :)

    And don't feel bad. I had to google to find out what scrapple is too! :) Hey! You need to tell your Georgia friend that you want to try grits while here! She'll know how to make them. :)

  7. Ruthy, surely you'll find them in your grocery!

    As for the fork or spoon debate... I've never heard of that! In fact, I don't think I've ever had grits that were so runny you'd HAVE to use a spoon. The ones I eat, even for breakfast, I could usually eat with a fork. Of course, I'm not the type to add milk to my oatmeal, either. I like it thick. :)

    BTW, the grits at 2 Dog (the restaurant that has the best grits ever) are thick enough that they're served in two big scoops (like they dished them out with an ice cream scoop). So they're really thick!

  8. Jenny, you're right about the little heart! :)

  9. No grits up here - I've looked! So I'll order from Amazon :)

    I've lived southern long enough to learn to love grits. And Missy, salt and pepper is the way to go. And butter.

    Scrapple is definitely an Amish dish - it must be since my Dad grew up eating it, but my German Mom and German hubby didn't! Those Pennsylvania Dutch know how to cook something out of the strangest parts of animals...

    Mush is another good way to use cornmeal - more finely ground than grits. Now THAT'S where you pour on the sweetening (i.e. Real Maple Syrup).

    I've got to get to work on my edits. At least I had breakfast before I stopped in this morning (you guys always make me so hungry...).

  10. Jan, I can't believe they don't sell them everywhere! Such a shame.

    Mush sounds good! I'll have to try that. Is there something you buy called "mush," or do you just look for corn flour?

    1. Mush is really two different things -

      First is a porridge made with cornmeal and water (or milk). Use 2 cups liquid to 1/2 cup cornmeal. Stir the cornmeal into the liquid with a whisk, then bring to a boil and cook until it's thick (about 5 minutes).

      Eat it this way just like any other hot cereal.

      OR -

      Pour the mush into a loaf pan, cover and let cool in the fridge overnight.

      In the morning, turn the loaf out onto a cutting board (it will be solid) and slice into 1/2" thick pieces. Fry these pieces in shallow oil until they're light brown. Serve with REAL maple syrup!

      This dish is very similar to Polenta - the main difference is the name and the way you eat it.

  11. I'm with Jenny -- I don't get this whole grits thing and it's totally not what I imagined when I read about them in books. It looks like cream of wheat to me. I don't think we have them here (phew!) but maybe the bulk food store might carry them. Are they like really fine cornmeal? I wonder what we have up here that would have you guys all wrinkling up your nose?

    Maybe poutine -- that's french fries covered in gravy and then topped with cheese (I think traditionally cheese curds. Doesn't that sound yummy?

    1. Kav, my son likes poutine, but I haven't tried it.

      Grits are extra coarse ground corn - and you're right, they're a lot like Cream of Wheat...but with that corn flavor instead of wheat.

    2. Yes, that sounds very yummy! FF and gravy... first YUM! Add cheese and that just multiplies the YUM and the fat on my hips.... And then throw some fried cheese curds on.

      Joy. Joy. Joy.

  12. LOL, Kav! Well, the name poutine is itself repellant! LOL

  13. Jan's right. It's a little like cream of wheat, only sweeter. And creamier (although that's probably because I use cream!) Maybe I should try cream of wheat with cream instead of water.

    1. Missy, I always make my Cream of Wheat with milk and my grits with water. Goin' for the half and half with the grits next time, though!

    2. This Yank can't eat cream of wheat or cream of rice, either. Maybe that's why grits don't work for me. But I love corn and watermelon so I'm part Southern, right?


      Oh, and peaches!!! And good 'cue!

    3. Ruthy, if you go a little farther west, it's "bu-bu-cue" :)

  14. We do have creamed corn here but its not fine like grits, you can still see the actual corn its great in tuna mornay (Ironically its the only way I like corn).

    Missy glad I gave you a laugh today they say its good for your health.