A Grits Thanksgiving??

Glorious Grits yes...but dressing??OK, I told you yesterday about how my Mom had saved two things from the Birmingham News….the first was about my childhood pediatrician having hosted the illustrious Julia Child for a week…and the second was all about grits.

It/s true, you know....

Glorious, glorious grits…I always feel sorry for people who say they don’t like grits…and always feel that if they had good grits, prepared and served the right way(mainly with butter, salt and pepper and never with sugar)…they would understand this basic, economical food of the south. Just think polenta. And I’ve carried grits way beyond the breakfast table, as most of you know. Grits cooked with chicken broth and finished with a little heavy cream and parmesan cheese are  worthy of any dinner table. My sister in Gulf Shores got a tip from a chef about the cream part…he suggests pouring cream over the top of grits after they cook, and let it sit there while you finish everything else, and then just stir it in when you’re ready to serve. It works.

But grits dressing for Thanksgiving?? (And for those of you who call it stuffing, let me tell you, in the south, it’s called dressing) This I have never heard of, but a new cookbook called…..that’s right…”Glorious Grits” says it’s not only possible but desirable. Yes,  all the recipes are about grits, including one for Sausage and Grits Dressing-here’s a link to the recipe.  My first thought…how can you take some gloppy grits and turn it into dressing? How?

The answer: cook grits and chill them. If you’ve ever put leftover grits in the frig, you know they turn into something akin to rubbery hockey pucks. Very firm. In this recipe you cut chilled grits into cubes and then roast those cubes until they are crisp and browned. So I’m thinking it’s kind of like a cornbread dressing? I may try it.

Nothin' better than hot grits

And there some other good recipes to try on the link…Shrimp and Grits with Succotash, Coconut-Crusted Polenta Cakes with Triple Berry Sauce, and Grits Bruschetta with Tomato Salsa. So get your grits on this weekend…and do yourself a favor one morning.  Cook a bowl of grits…NOT INSTANT…although quick grits are ok…add salt and pepper, and plop a pat of yellow butter on top. Sigh as it melts into golden rivulets. Enjoy.

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9 Responses

  1. My husband would eat grits 24 hours a day. I will have to ask him if he would like his turkey stuffed with grits. I am glad you got to spend some time with your Mom. Cherish every minute. My Mom has been gone for 6 years and I miss her every day.

  2. Ha! Obviously you have a grits loving man on your hands….yes PLEASE stuff his turkey with grits and see if he knows what it is!!!!!

  3. I love grits and used them in many was but in the turkey?? I just don’t know..It could be one of those things that is possible and palatable but is it better than real dressing. Kind of like a veggie burger being substituted for a real beef burger, while it is tastey it not the same. I also enjoyed your post about Julia Childs. I had a chance to meet her at a book signing in Towson a long time ago but didn’t go because of the weather. I have regretted it ever since.

  4. I learned that grits were delicious when my husband was stationed in the Atlanta area about 25 years ago. I also learned how to make sweet tea and to order un-sweet. Those three years in the South taught me to love much about the South. Don’t know if I want to try grits in my turkey, though. My son-in-law from Philadelphia calls stuffing “filling”–he says that it fills the turkey and that is what they call it.

  5. Oh Paul….a chance to meet the fabulous Julia? That is indeed a missed opportunity. I never got the chance.
    And Kathy, that is a new one. I’ve never heard of stuffing(or dressing where I come from) called filling. “Pass the filling, please”……just doesn’t sound right, does it? Of course, where did the term “dressing” come from?
    Have a great weekend.

  6. When this ole Pennsylvania boy went to Tenn for college in the ’70’s I discovered grits. To this day I can’t resist a hot bowl of grits at anytime of the day. Odd thing though, my wife is from Tenn and can’t stand ’em, go figure. Ever put them in the fridge overnight and then the next day, slice and fry them and put maple syrup on them. Very good!!

  7. My mother-in-law makes a dressing with grits and saltines that is to die for. She tried to teach me, and after years I think I have it down!

  8. My Mother-in-law told me that her Mother use to make
    Grits Dressing. They didn’t put them in the fridge, though.
    She would make her basic cornbread dressing and instead of
    bread crumbs, she would use the same amount of cooked
    grits. Just mix it in. I fixed Cornbread Dressing both ways
    last Thanksgiving and the Grits Dressing was eaten in a
    hurry. I’m fixing (that’s a good southern word) it both ways
    again this year. It’s already been requested.

  9. Ever since my daughter went to college in North Carolina, we have enjoyed grits. We tried the recipe for grits dressing, and it was good. A little rich compared to our traditional dressing, but we enjoyed it. Thought the grits croutons would be good by themselves!

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