Sunday, September 26, 2010

Italian Shimp and Grits

Serves 4

Total Time: about 45 min.

1 C corn meal for polenta
1 shallot, minced
2 tbsp butter
1/4 C good cheese (shredded or grated)--I suggest parmesan or similar hard cheese, but I'm sure a cheddar would be good too)
1/4 lb bacon (or pancetta)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, diced
4 oz assorted mushrooms (or whatever is your favorite)
1/2 tsp hot red pepper flakes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
1 pound large shrimp, peeled (I left the tails on)
1 bottle dry white wine
freshly ground black pepper

Cook polenta (usually use about 1:3 ratio of cornmeal to boiled, salted water). I added the shallot when I added the cornmeal.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in 12-inch skillet until hot but not smoking (medium heat). Add the bacon and cook until it starts to brown and get crispy. Add onion and cook until starting to soften. Add mushrooms and cook until softened. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant. I add some freshly ground pepper to each of these ingredients as they are added to the pan.

Add the tomatoes with juices, throw in the shrimp and simmer until only a little liquid remains and the shrimp are almost done. Add 1/2-3/4 C wine and simmer until about a 1/4 to 1/3 C liquid remains.

When polenta is done, add the butter and cheese (and, if needed, salt) and stir until the fats are melted. Spoon the shrimp/tomato mixture over the polenta and drink the rest of the wine.

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