As a southern girl from the United States, I, of course, know my way around a bowl of steamy hot grits. You can even find t-shirts in tourist shops with the acronym G.R.I.T.S. used to abbreviate Girls Raised In The South. Me and grits are friends, I woke up to them many mornings as a child. My husband, on the other hand, not so much. He wasn’t raised in the south and isn’t getting near grits, no matter how much I have tried to convince him it really is okay.
Grits, if you don’t know them, are very similar to polenta. However, they are not polenta. Polenta is made from boiling cornmeal. Grits are made from corn kernels that have been treated with an alkaline solution and then washed and dried and ground down, similar to the process for masa harina, just not ground as finely.
My husband and I had our honeymoon in Charleston, SC. The whimsical cobblestone roads and old architecture made for such a romantic getaway. While we were there, we ate at a quaint brunch spot and I had the best grits of my life there. Doing my research, I found out the Charlestonians boil their grits in milk instead of the all water method of most of the south. I was a convert. Using my preference for yellow stone ground grits and the Charleston method, I make a lovely bowl for one when the mood strikes. Enjoy!
- 1 cup water
- Salt to taste
- 1/4 cup quick cooking or old-fashioned grits (not instant!)
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- optional add ins are cheese, bacon, eggs, sausage (any or all)
In a large, heavy sauce pan bring the water to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt and the grits and stir with a wooden spoon to combine. When grits thicken add milk and butter and return to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover sauce pan and cook for 45 minutes to one hour, until grits are tender, smooth and creamy. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Keep covered and warm until ready to serve.