Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Sauteed Shrimp with Sweet Potato and Smoked Chile Grits

shrmp grts, originally uploaded by Kim De.

This is the final post for about a week. NYC here we come!

Tomorrow night is Mesa Grill and last night we had the final recipe, Sauteed Shrimp with Sweet Potato and Smoked Chile Grits and Green Onion-Cilantro Sauce.

Again, WOW! Not being a fan of sweet potatoes, a recipe including them always takes a leap of faith for me, but adding the chipotle peppers convinced me to try it, and am I glad I did!

While cooking I was concerned about the grits, not being a southern girl so not being used to cooking them, because they seemed a bit gummy. One bite, and that fear was gone. Add to it shrimp and the fabulous sauce and the taste buds are happy campers!

Another winner and our mouths are set for the real deal tomorrow tonight!

Have a great week!

Sauteed Shrimp with Sweet Potato and Smoked Chile Grits and Green Onion-Cilantro Sauce (Adapted from Bobby Flay)

1 large sweet potato
½ tablespoon canola oil
1 small Spanish onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 ½ cups Enriched Chicken Stock or low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons chipotle chile puree
Kosher salt
1 ½ cups quick-cooking grits
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 to 3 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb. large shrimp, shelled and deveined
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Roast the sweet potato on a rack in the oven until tender when pierced with a knife, 45 to 60 minutes.

Peel the sweet potato and puree the flesh in a food processor or pass it through a ricer; set aside.

Heat the canola oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the stock, milk, chipotle puree, and 2 teaspoons salt and bring to a boil. Slowly whisk in the grits, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in the sweet potato puree and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 to 10 minutes, until smooth and thickened. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter and honey to taste. Cover and keep warm.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Cook half of the shrimp until lightly golden brown and just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining oil and shrimp.

Spoon the grits into 4 shallow bowls and arrange the shrimp around the grits. Drizzle with the green onion-cilantro sauce.

Green Onion-Cilantro Sauce

1 cup sliced green onions, white and green parts (about 12)
¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup canola oil

Combine the green onions, cilantro, vinegar, 1/4 cup cold water, the mustard, and honey in a blender and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. With the motor running, slowly add the oil and blend until emulsified. This can be made up to 8 hours in advance and refrigerated.

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