Kentucky Derby Shrimp and Smoked Grits with Tasso Gravy

April 26, 2016

Did we have you at "smoked grits"? One bite of these creamy, smoky, goat cheese-loaded grits with sweet shrimp and spicy pork and coffee-based gravy will have you saying giddy up! It's the perfect dish to serve at your Kentucky Derby party - be it one in attendance or a whole crowd. Be sure to get your Louismill Stone Ground Smoked Grits now as it's a unique product and incomparable in flavor.

Shrimp and Smoked Grits with Tasso Gravy  
Courtesy of Levy Restaurants

Serves 4

For the Smoked Grits:
2  cups chicken broth
2  cups heavy cream
1 cup  Louismill Stone Ground Smoked Grits  (see note below)
8 ounces goat cheese

In a thick bottom pot, bring cream and chicken broth to a boil. Add in grits and reduce heat to medium high. Stir often and cook for 20-25 minutes. Once grits are tender, fold in goat cheese and cook until goat cheese is melted and grits are smooth.

*Note: Louismill Stone Ground Smoked Grits are available online here. We've not found smoked grits at any other store, so we highly recommend purchasing a bag (or two, as we did!) to have on hand. If you can't wait, you can add a couple dashes of liquid smoke or smoked oil to your grits, though it will not yield the same result.

For the Tasso Gravy:
Tasso is a type of smoked pork with a spicy rind that is cut into strips and often used in Cajun dishes. If you can't find tasso in your local market, look for it on or use any smoked ham or Canadian bacon.

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 pound tasso, diced

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup strong coffee

2 cups chicken broth

2 dash Tabasco sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in a skillet; add tasso, and sauté until browned. Whisk in flour, and cook, whisking constantly, until lightly browned. Whisk in coffee and broth; simmer, whisking until smooth, about 15 minutes.

For the Shrimp:
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined (tails on)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil and butter in a skillet over medium heat. Sauté onions until tender, then toss in shrimp. Season with salt and pepper, and cook 4 to 5 minutes or until shrimp turn pink.   Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Garnish (optional): Micro greens or finely chopped parsley or green onions.

To Plate:
Divide grits among four plates. Place shrimp on top of grits and top with Tasso gravy. Garnish with parsley, micro greens, or finely chopped green onions.