This recipe was contributed by Capt. Tricia Buchen
- 1 pound medium fresh shrimp (heads-on whole)
- 6 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt, divided
- 3/4 cup white grits
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 6 ounces Pepper Jack Velveeta, cubed
- 8 strips center cut bacon
- 3 tablespoons olive oil - if needed
- 1 cup chopped sweet onion
- 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
- 2 green onions, chopped, plus more for garnish
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Remove heads from shrimp, peel and set aside, (save heads and shells)
Preparing stock: Bring six cups water to boil, add shrimp shells and heads. Low-boil 20 minutes while stirring occasionally. Cool and strain stock, discard shells.
Cooking the grits: In large saucepan, bring 3½ cups prepared shrimp stock to boil, add ½ teaspoon salt. Stir in grits and butter. Cover and reduce heat, simmer about 10-15 minutes, stir occasionally until grits are soft and thickened. Add Velveeta, stir until melted and well blended. Set aside and keep warm.
Fry bacon in large skillet until well done. Remove and cool, then crumble. Save drippings in skillet. Add olive oil to skillet (if needed). Sauté onion, red bell pepper and jalapeño for 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle with flour, and cook while stirring gently to mix well, especially bottom of the pan.
Gradually add 1-1/2 cups shrimp stock, stirring to scrape pan drippings and to prevent lumps. Add crumbled bacon, and increase heat to medium-high. Bring mixture to boil, and cook until slightly thickened. Add shrimp, and cook 3 minutes, or until pink. Remove from heat; add cream and lime juice. Stir in green onion, cilantro, remaining 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and pepper.
Spoon shrimp mixture over warm grits, garnish with chopped green onion. Adding a sprinkle of crumbled bacon adds to the presentation.Serve with fresh green beans or fried green tomatoes.