Ginger Sesame Key Lime Shrimp Grits

March 19, 2007 in cheese, cookbook, cooking, Fish, Food Porn, ingredient, International Boston Seafood Show, recipe, seafood

shrimp grits

There was a sense of [tag]manifest destiny[/tag] around this dish when it came together for me the other day. I was coming off my [tag]seafood[/tag] high from the [tag]International Boston Seafood Show[/tag], I had found some huge super [tag]jumbo[/tag] [tag]raw[/tag] [tag]shrimp[/tag] on sale for $9.99/lb (thats good around here), and I had been hankering for [tag]Paula Deen[/tag]’s [tag]Shrimp Grits[/tag] that I had seen in the [tag]Best of the Best cookbook[/tag] I got last year from [tag]Food & Wine Magazine[/tag].

The source cookbook was [tag]Paula Deen & Friends: Living It Up, Southern Style[/tag].

[tag]Leite’s Culinaria[/tag] has done a beautiful job of spotlighting this recipe so I won’t do the same. What I will do instead is show you the recipe for my [tag]adaptation[/tag], which is really quite different than what Miss Paula did.

Before I get started, please let me emphasize that you can NOT use second rate [tag]instant grits[/tag]. There is no use to even starting out if thats what you are going to use. Having lived in the south a long time, I can appreciate a good grit and let me tell you, the best has always been [tag]stone-ground[/tag]. I used [tag]Bob’s Red Mill Corn Grits[/tag] (not sure they need to say “corn,” are there other types of grits?). Fantastic flavor and texture, I can not rave enough about Bob’s Red Mill anything.

[tag]Nika’s Ginger Sesame Key Lime Shrimp Grits[/tag]

Serves four for lunch


  • 1 C Bob’s Red Mill Corn Grits
  • 5 C water
  • 1/2 tsp [tag]sea salt[/tag]
  • 1/8 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 C [tag]cheddar cheese[/tag], very finely grated
  • 1 lb jumbo shrimp, raw and de-veined
  • 2 [tag]green onion[/tag]s, diced
  • 2 cloves [tag]garlic[/tag], minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp [tag]ginger[/tag], minced
  • handful of [tag]cilantro[/tag], chopped
  • 3 tablespoons [tag]Nellie & Joe’s Key West Lime Juice[/tag]
  • 3 tablespoons [tag]Sesame Seed Oil[/tag]
  • Olive Oil, as needed to saute (add a pat of butter if desired)
  • Coarse Ground Sea Salt to season
  • [tag]Toasted sesame seeds[/tag] to [tag]garnish[/tag]


Bring 5 C of fresh cold water, 1/2 tsp sea salt, and a dash of roasted sesame seed oil to a boil.

Add 1 C [tag]grits[/tag], bring it back to a boil, turn down to a simmer, and cook over low heat for 15 – 20 minutes, stirring diligently. Beware of any splattering grits during this time. Those flying wet grit splashes hurt like the dickens if they get on you. Make sure to keep kids and pets away while making this.

Turn off the heat and add the 1/8 stick butter and a cup of the finely shredded cheese, mix, and cover the pot. Put it at the back of the stove while you do the rest of the recipe, making sure there is no heat under the pot.

Rinse and pat the shrimp dry and select two to be minced into tiny pieces. Put the rest of the whole shrimp aside, on ice or in the fridge.

Over medium heat in a small pan, sweat the minced garlic and ginger in about one tablespoon of olive oil, a pat of unsalted butter, a pinch of sea salt, and 1/8 teaspoon roasted sesame seed oil. Do not use high heat as the garlic will become bitter. If your pan is large, you may need to add more of the oils and butter, up to you.

Add minced shrimp, green onions, key lime juice, and cilantro (save some raw to garnish) and cook until just soft and the shrimp mince is releasing its juicy goodness.

Making sure that the heat is on medium low (just barely enough to cook at all), add the shrimp to the pan and slowly cook until just barely pink. You want the shrimp to be still a bit raw and wonderfully crunchy. I know that some of you need to go to a complete cooked shrimp, thats ok. This is really about they way you like your shrimp. Shrimp is the focus in this dish so take care to make the best shrimp you can.

Portion out the still hot grits (they are amazing in their heat holding capacity), add a small handful of finely shredded cheese, a slight dribble of sesame seed oil, a sprinkle of sea salt, and top with the shrimp. The carry-over heat of the shrimp and the grits will take them to completion. Make sure to serve all the juices in the pan too.

Garnish with fresh cilantro and sesame seeds. You may want to add a fresh dash of key lime juice now if you really like the citrus bang like I do.


Let me know if you make this recipe and if you liked it.

shrimp grits

I made an soy based sauce because I like that flavor (others in my family do not so they were happy without it).

Mix: Ponzu citric flavored soy sauce, sesame seed oil, minced ginger, tiny amount of minced garlic, and minced cilantro.

When I was looking for props for these shots, I pulled out one of the several Asian teapots I have (bought off of eBay ages ago). When I looked at it more closely, I realized that it was adorned with shrimp! Talk about 1) serendipity and 2) my inattention to detail :-).

shrimp teapot

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