Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Shrimp & Okra Gumbo with Grits

I've never had grits before. Never, not once. Not with my breakfast, not with my dinner. Ever since I heard the phrase "kiss my grits" as a child I just associated grits with something rather unpleasant. Plus, the monochromatic beige delicacy with the consistency of thick oatmeal never seemed all the appealing. When my mom said a Shrimp and Okra Gumbo recipe caught her eye, however, I decided it was time to get over my childhood aversion and go for it. Good thing, because turns out... I like grits. 

The gumbo recipe was from Cooking Light...we all know how much I love that magazine. It was actually really easy! A lot of gumbo recipes are time consuming, thus a turn off, but this was great. I was in New Orleans (no, not New Orleeeeens, but Nawlins as the natives call it) about two months ago, and honestly- this gumbo is as tasty as the true cuisine! Give it a try! PS, I've not really had okra either, so if you haven't it's not scary... just a little funny looking. It's very mild, actually. Okay, enough. Here is the recipe:

Ingredients for the Gumbo:
2  tablespoons  canola oil, divided
3  tablespoons  all-purpose flour
10  tablespoon  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
cup  chopped onion
4  ounces  smoked ham, chopped (We had to use salami... Oops! Still good!)
cup  chopped green bell pepper
2/3  cup  diced celery
1/2  teaspoon  dried thyme
garlic cloves, minced
1/2  pound  fresh okra pods, sliced
1/4  cup  water
1/2  teaspoon  ground red pepper
1/2  teaspoon  paprika
1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
1/4  teaspoon  salt
1/4  teaspoon  ground allspice
(28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
3/4  pound  peeled and deveined large shrimp
tablespoons  chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Ingredients for the Grits:

3/4 cup quick cooking grits

1 cup Greek Yogurt (we used 2% fat... fat free is fine!)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Sprinkle of garlic powder


Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour; cook 1 minute or until lightly browned, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add broth; stir with a whisk until thick. Pour into a bowl; set aside. Wipe pan clean with paper towels.
Make sure that when you're cooking your ham and onion to start boiling the water for the grits!) Add bell pepper and next 4 ingredients (through okra); cook 5 minutes or until vegetables are almost tender, stirring occasionally. Add broth mixture, water, and next 6 ingredients (through tomatoes). Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in shrimp; cook 4 minutes or until shrimp are done. Sprinkle with parsley.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in pan over medium heat. Add onion and ham; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. (

3. While gumbo is in the making, bring 2 1/2 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Gradually whisk in 3/4 cup quick cooking grits; cover, reduce heat, and simmer about 8 minutes, or until thick. Stir in 1 cup Greek yogurt, salt, pepper and garlic powder.

4. Spoon grits into bowl; Top with Gumbo!

Nutrition Information (Gumbo only. Grits subject to change depending on what brand/which Greek yogurt used)
Calories: 300
Fat: 10.5g (sat 1.4g,mono 4.4g,poly 2.8g)
Protein: 26.6g
Carbohydrate: 26.5g
Fiber: 7.3g
Cholesterol: 143mg
Iron: 4mg
Sodium: 918mg

The yogurt in the grits gives it this creamy rich consistency. The gumbo is chock full of vegetables. We even used frozen grits to cut down on time. Make sure that when you're cooking your ham and onion to start boiling the water for the grits!

No comments: