Well, I am finally in my new kitchen, in a new state ready to try some new things! Since moving to Georgia I have been researching the local food scene, looking at new ingredients and how I can use them. The first thing I want to tackle is southern style grits which are served for breakfast almost every where. I love to add cheese to my version because regular grits with butter is just too plain for me. I like to add three different cheeses; cheddar, fontina and parmesan, but you can try your own combination of cheeses or just one. Its all up to you! I like to serve mine with diced country ham and some bacon. I'll think I will make some extra to make my version of shrimp and grits. More on that later. First you may ask, what is the difference between grits and polenta? The major difference is that grits are traditionally made from a type of corn called dent corn, while polenta is made from flint corn. Polenta is usually a little coarser and can have a firmer texture while grits generally are creamier. I have tried two premium stone ground offerings. The first I got from The Healthy Gourmet in Athens, GA ( check them out on facebook ) from the Logan Turnpike Mill ( http://www.loganturnpikemill.com/ ) and the second are called Gayla's Grits from Shaw Farms ( http://gaylasgrits.com/ ) which I picked up at Lizzies Pantry ( http://www.lizziespantry.com/ ).
2 cups stone ground premium white grits
1 1/2 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 cup milk
water to achieve proper consistency
1 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup grated fontina cheese
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 pieces of thick sliced bacon cooked crisp and broken into pieces
1/4 pound country ham fried and simmered in water to reduce saltiness
1. Add the butter to a large sauce pan and the grits and toast on medium heat for 10 minutes
2. Add the chicken broth and milk to the sauce pan and bring to a boil while stirring with a wisk
3. Continue cooking until grits soften (about 15 minutes)
4. Grate the cheeses and add while stirring.
5, Season with salt to taste and add water to achieve proper consistency.
6. Serve in a bowl with the diced bacon and ham
I grew up on Sunday roast beef and Yorkshire puddings while my wife grew up eating the southern American version of toad in a hole, a pan fried piece of buttered bread with round hole in the center in which a egg is fried. She also likes pancakes called Dutch babies which are similar to a Yorkshire pudding pancake. I like both versions and plan to make both and call it toad in the hole, 2 ways. Today I am going to show you the British version first. This is a simple dish and I am going to make a large single serving using a small cast iron skillet but you can make a full version in a full sized cast iron skillet (Just double the recipe amounts). Let this be a starting point and make it your own by changing things around. I can see using corn meal, using different meats, (I tried it with smoked turkey and quail eggs) eggs. Traditionally this is served with a gravy, but today I served it with maple syrup (my wife's idea).
6 links of breakfast sausage
1/2 cup self rising flour
2 tbsp. melted butter plus extra for the skillet
1/2 to 1 cup buttermilk
salt, pepper and sugar to taste
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Beat the eggs and 1/2 cup of the buttermilk together with salt, pepper and the sugar. Add the flour to a bowl, make a well in the center and stir in the egg mixture. Adjust the thickness of the batter to your liking. Thinner will be more like Yorkshire pudding, thicker more like a pancake. Choose your preference. Let rest for half a hour.
Brown the sausage in a skillet or in the oven. Save the grease.
Heat the cast iron skillet in the oven for at least 10 minutes. Remove the preheated skillet from the oven and add the grease from the sausage plus some butter to coat the bottom of the skillet. Add a thin layer of batter, then the sausages, then more batter filling the pan at least half way up the pan. Return the skillet to the oven and bake until brown on top and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Serve with maple syrup and enjoy!
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ideas and techniques of cooking rather than just a collection of recipes. I believe to grow as a chef, I need to continually learn and hone new techniques along with perfecting each technique I use every day. Whenever I go to a restaurant, whether fine dining, neighborhood pub, avant garde, or even fast food, I continually ask myself how can I do this better, what works and more important, what doesn’t? Feel free to send me comments, ask questions. Together, we can explore and make creative cuisine.
Spending almost thirty years in the computing field, I was able to travel experiencing a wide variety of tremendous cuisine. First I became a foodie, and when the opportunity arose, I was able to attend culinary school following my passion. I work as a part-time private chef and volunteer time at the community café in North Bend Oregon providing affordable meals in a restaurant setting to my community.