Grits?

Discussion in 'Rice, Pasta, Pulses and Grains' started by morning glory, 20 Feb 2019.

  1. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    I wish I understood 'grits'. They aren't something we have in the UK. The concept (and name!) never really sounds very appetising to me. As always, I'm willing to be convinced. Do you make grits? And why are they so popular?
     
    Last edited: 20 Feb 2019
  2. Yorky

    Yorky Uncomfortably numb Recipe Challenge Judge

    I first came across "grits" watching the Beverley Hillbillies in the 60s. There was no internet (obviously) at that time so I didn't discover what they were. Wrongly I assumed that it was some form of boiled up offal.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 20 Feb 2019
  3. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    We prefer hominy grits and they are a southern breakfast staple. There are many recipes for shrimp and grits, but we prefer "low country" style. Long cooking grits are the only way to go as instant grits are pure garbage. If you like polenta, you'll like grits, IMO.
     
  4. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    I'm not convinced by polenta either as yet - but I've only tried it a few times...

    What is 'low country style'?
     
  5. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    The low country is an area of South Carolina. We also like NOLA style. I believe both are Creole versions.
     
  6. medtran49

    medtran49 Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    A common brand:

    https://www.bobsredmill.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=grits

    I personally prefer the white corn Southern Style grits but either the yellow or white works. My favorite is stone-ground grits from one of the southern states, but you usually have to order those from small, boutique type mills. The ones in the link are all long cooking grits versus the instant that Craig mentioned or the quick grits, which he didn't. I can't stand the instant, they are more like cream of wheat. I don't really like the quick grits either, which are usually cooked 5-10 minutes. The directions on most long-cooking grits usually call for 25-35 minutes of cooking, but I cook mine much longer than that, more toward an hour, adding additional liquid as needed. I feel the taste and texture both improve. I also use a mixture of liquids, stock of some kind (usually either chicken or shrimp), cream and water, plus butter and lots of salt and pepper.

    You have to aggressively season grits or they are just bland, just like polenta. I think that's the reason a lot of people say they don't like them. They've never had them cooked correctly. When I do order grits in a restaurant, and I ask how they are cooked prior, I ALWAYS end up adding salt, pepper and butter because they are never seasoned enough. So, I understand why people don't like them.

    Grits can be soft and slightly runny, or firm enough to chill, cut and fry until golden brown and yummy. Just like with polenta and risotto, the amount of liquid you add dictates how "tight" the end product is.

    Grits are more popular in the southern portion of the U.S. Except for maybe in the large cities in the south, you won't find a restaurant that doesn't have grits on the menu at least for breakfast.
     
    Last edited: 20 Feb 2019
  7. medtran49

    medtran49 Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    The chitterlings were probably stewed and served over top of the grits.
     
  8. medtran49

    medtran49 Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    The "low country" is the coastal areas of South Carolina and Georgia. It used to extend from Northern Florida up into North Carolina, but has now become more localized. It also includes the Gullah region and people. Low Country cuisine is what's available in that region, lots of seafood, rice, grits, etc.

    Low country cooking is very similar to Cajun cooking, i.e. what the plantation owners and more well to do people didn't want, and what could be scavenged/hunted from the land/marshes. You have to realize that shrimp, lobster, oysters, turtles, frogs, as well as the less desirable parts of pigs, cows and chickens were things that a lot of well off people didn't want to eat back in those days (and, of course, there are parts still that most of us don't want to eat). Lobster was a poor man's food even just 50 or 60 years ago, maybe even less than that in the States.
     
    morning glory likes this.
  9. Shermie

    Shermie Veteran

    Location:
    Brighton, MA.
    I eat it sometimes. :wink:
     
  10. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    I think that is exactly my problem - plus, with polenta it is the texture which seems to be like semolina pudding. Maybe grits have a more interesting texture?
     
  11. medtran49

    medtran49 Über Member

    Location:
    SE Florida
    If you get the coarse or stone-ground they never quite lose the "gritty" texture no matter how long you cook them.
     
  12. oddduck

    oddduck Active Member

    Location:
    Usa
    Love grits. Have them weekly for breakfast or dinner. I like mine on the gritty side so i don't use as much water as usually called for. I like them with butter and salt and pepper or with cheese and chipolte. I like them on the firmer side not runny and never cold. I like long cooked or quick but never instant...thats like mush...they cook with ease in the microwave or stovetop. They are great as a side to eggs and toast or just a nice steaming bowl of grits. They are a comfort food as they were always a breakfast staple on cold mornings before heading off to the bus stop to go to school.

    When my sister moved to upstate new york she couldn't find grits at the grocery store so it was one of those things she wrote home about so we could send her some...so she would get her package of grits and also everglades seasoning since that was something else she couldn't find. Its those classic tastes of home you miss.
     
    morning glory and Shermie like this.

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