It brings me great pleasure in saying Thanksgiving is right around the corner! You are all aware by now of my obsession with the holiday season. Amazing food, family & friends, cozy nights at home, warm tea & cocoa, Christmas decorations & music are just a few of the things on my “Reasons Why Holidays Are the Best” list. The anticipation makes me antsy. In keeping with my Week of Turkey Day Recipes theme, here is my great-grandmother’s glorious cheese grits* recipe.
This recipe has been a staple at our family Thanksgiving get-together for as long as I can remember. Nowadays, the cheese grits are my mom’s contribution to the feast as my great-grandmother lives in Kentucky and is almost 90 years old. I’ll give my mom props though; she’s perfected cheese grits. I haven’t even tried to make them myself for fear of failing miserably and being terribly disappointed. Since I’m on the topic of my mother’s cooking, she recently made a new dessert (or new to us anyway) and yes, it was delicious. So…expect that recipe later this week.
Whether you cook to entertain, as a hobby, or just to fulfill basic biological needs, it can’t be denied that food makes people happy. The only thing I enjoy more than eating food, is giving it away. I love when people love my food and I love when other people are happy. No wonder eating is such a central part of holiday celebrations! (Sorry, I didn’t mean to get all cheesy -no pun intended. I guess the holidays make me sappier.)
1 1/2 cup Quaker 5-minute Grits
6 cups water
1 lb Velveeta, cubed
3 beaten eggs
1/2 stick unsalted butter, cubed
2 tsp. Lawry’s seasoned salt
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. tabasco
Dash of Parmesan cheese
Measure and prepare all ingredients before beginning. Preheat oven to 300° F. Bring water to boil. Add grits slowly while stirring with whisk. Turn down to a low boil or simmer (still rumbling) for about 10- 12 minutes until creamy looking, but not thick. Stir with whisk occasionally. (May need to put a lid partly on if the grits are jumping out of pot.) Remove from heat. With whisk drop a few drops of cooked grits into bowl of beaten eggs- this tempers the eggs so they don’t cook when added to the grits in pot. Add butter, cubed Velveeta, eggs, seasoning, salt, tabasco, and parmesan cheese. Whisk until creamy. Pour into buttered casserole dish, 9×13. Bake for 1 hour or until lightly browned in places on top.
*For those of you wondering what cheese grits are, they are simply grits with cheese; and grits consist of coarsely ground corn. Grits are often eaten for breakfast like a sort of porridge. Sugar or salt and pepper can be added for more flavor. If you still have no idea what I’m talking about, you must not be from the South. Grits, along with fried chicken/anything, define southern cooking.