Shrimp and grits is a southern classic, but I added a creole twist to create this flavorful barbecue version. New Orleans style barbecue shrimp is different than a traditional barbecue flavor, using Worcestershire sauce, butter and creole seasoning as a base. This rich broth is so good I could drink it with a straw. Grab a really good baguette and sop it up! I’d run a marathon just to eat seconds. 😉
I love making fresh polenta. This fresh stone-ground corn from Anson Mills is pretty amazing. A cooking tip: when adding the polenta to the boiling broth/water, make sure that you pour it in slowly while stirring constantly. I need to emphasize SLOWLY. If you dump, you will clump, so make sure it’s a gradual pour. You might be asking “Is Polenta the same thing as grits?” The answer is yes and no. They are both made from ground corn, but it’s actually the type of corn that makes them different. I’m going to save my breath here, because the experts over at TheKitchn do an excellent job explaining the difference. If you’d like a polenta vs. grits lesson, you can read all about it here.
This recipe was part of a seafood round-up created for the Acme Market’s newsletter, The Weekly Nibble.
Barbecue Shrimp Over Aged Cheddar Polenta
For the shrimp
- 1 1/2 lbs shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cold, unsalted and cubed
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 large green onions, finely chopped
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning
- fresh parsley for garnish
For the polenta
- 1 cup polenta
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 8 oz block aged white cheddar cheese, freshly grated
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 tbsp butter
- First prepare the polenta:
- Bring broth, salt and water to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Slowly, add polenta, while whisking and continue to stir until slightly thickened.
- Reduce heat to low and keep whisking until it begins to have a creamier consistency.
- Cover and cook for 30-40 minutes, checking and stirring every 8-10 minutes.
- Make sure to scrape down sides while stirring.
- When desired texture is achieved (whether you like them creamy or thicker), stir in cheese and butter until melted and set aside to keep warm.
- For the shrimp:
- Warm olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat.
- Saute garlic until lightly golden.
- Add lemon juice, Worcestershire, onions, white and black pepper, cajun seasoning and shrimp to the pan.
- Raise heat to medium-high and cook 2-3 minutes until shrimp are no longer pink. Slowly, add in butter, while stirring constantly until butter is all melted, being careful not to burn.
- Spoon polenta into a bowl and add a few shrimp on top.
- Spoon a little of of the juice on top and garnish with fresh parsley.
- You can also serve this with baguettes to soak up all that saucy goodness.
- Serve immediately.