By happy accident, Amber Huffman combined leftovers of two low-country staples—barbecue and cheddar cheese grits—for a quick Southern fusion meal. It became a Jess Jackson favorite. Here, Huffman tops her grits with grilled shrimp slicked with a tangy, bourbon-based barbecue sauce. "I seriously have received three marriage proposals over a bowl of my cheese grits," says Huffman. "I've accepted none so far."
Slideshow: More Southern Recipes
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
1 1/4 cups ketchup
1/4 cup bourbon
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons Tabasco
1 teaspoon chopped thyme
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined large shrimp
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Cheese Grits, for serving
How to Make It
In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the ketchup, bourbon, cider vinegar, molasses, honey, Tabasco, thyme and cayenne. Simmer over low heat, until thickened, about 40 minutes.
Transfer the barbecue sauce to a blender and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Pour 1/3 cup of the sauce into a small bowl and reserve the rest.
Preheat a grill pan. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper and brush on both sides with the 1/3 cup of barbecue sauce. Grease the grill pan with the oil. Grill the shrimp over moderate heat, turning once, until cooked through, about 4 minutes. Transfer to plates and serve with cheese grits and the remaining barbecue sauce.
The barbecue sauce can be refrigerated for up to a week.
Huffman's rich cheese grits need a wine with some substance, but one that isn't so tannic and massive that it will overwhelm the sweet shrimpin other words, Pinot Noir.
You May Like
Sign Up for Our Newsletter
Keeping you in the know on all the latest & greatest food and travel news, and other special offers.