Who cares if I bloat up like a beached whale? That's what I'm having for supper tonight.
Postscript: Oh, hell yes.
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They may not be exactly Gulf Coast but they are really good under some nice blackened fish.
Best Ever Cheese Grits
1 cup coarsely ground grits
2 1/2 cups milk
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 cups parmesan cheese
salt and pepper, to taste
Combine grits, milk and cream. Over medium heat, bring grits to a slow boil then reduce heat to simmer. Simmer, stirring frequently until grits are creamy, 10-15 minutes. Whisk in cheese, salt and pepper
First, full disclosure: The beautifully garnished platters of food you see here were not created by me. They were created by my friends Roger and Lisa, who handily won an appetizer challenge at a party I attended this weekend. There are no photos of my entry. Because if there was a dead last place, that's where my entry would have been. It was a failure of epic proportions.
Here's the background: Every year, on the fourth of July weekend, we attend a pig roast hosted by a large and rowdy Filipino family.I've been going to this party for almost 20 years. My husband first took me when we were just dating. I had such a good time, and loved this family so much, that I married him, just so I could get to them. So anyway, there's always lots of great food--excellent Filipino fare like pancit (something I haven't been brave enough to try to make), and this vegetable thing with bitter melon and some kind of leaves off these trees Uncle grows, and these amazing eggrolls, and sometimes grilled squid, and of course, The Pig.
Combine all ingredients except lemon juice and bring to a boil--you must boil the alcohol out of the champagne so it'll freeze. Once the sugar has dissolved, remove from the heat. Let the mixture steep for a while at room temperature, until it's cool. Stir in the lemon juice and eat the lemon zest--it's so yummy, sort of candied, and as the cook, you get to eat all of it without sharing. Or I guess you could save it and chop it and garnish the sorbet with it, if you're generous. But don't throw it out--it's really yummy. Strain the mixture to remove all the solids and chill it. Once it's cold, use an ice cream freezer to freeze it--or if you don't have one, pour it into a shallow glass pan and place it in the freezer. Use a fork to periodically scrape the mixture into slushiness. And that's it--serve little scoops of it in hollowed out strawberries, or just serve it in a bowl.
I don't have Lisa's recipe, but if anybody wants it, I'm sure she'll share, as all generous and good-hearted cooks will. But here's my stab at Roger's:
Roger's Rosemary Bacon Wrapped Shrimp
So I know most of us can't create the precious little flowers from radishes and tomatoes and spring onions that made Roger's dish a winner, but really, the dish itself would have won on the basis of flavor alone. And it was so simple--it's barely a recipe.