October 31, 2014

The Ultimate Indulgence – Creamy Gouda Grits

Here I am again, posting an incredibly indulgent recipe while I am in the middle of another 20-day fruit and vegetable cleanse.  And of course, my mouth is watering as I type this.  I totally have to put a disclaimer on this recipe post – it is INSANELY indulgent.  The calorie count is probably off the charts and let's not even talk about the fat count.  But sometimes you just have to splurge and enjoy GOOD food.  And this is one of those GOOD comfort food recipes.  One that will probably haunt you in your sleep.  You will wake up craving these, possibly every Sunday. LOL!
 
I have been eating grits for as long as I can remember.  My mom used to make us a hot bowl of grits with eggs and toast before school in the morning.  They were so perfectly smooth and creamy.  With plenty of cheese and black pepper.  That's what I remember the most.  I don't make grits as often as I would like for my family, but when I do it's a huge treat.  For breakfast or even as a side dish with dinner. {Um, braised short ribs with cheese grits!}
 
This is a pretty simple recipe but it does require some babysitting.  Grits are not something that can be left alone while cooking.  The pot requires constant stirring and in some occasions, adding of  more liquid to get the perfect consistency.  Another important note about cooking grits: they are to be gently simmered {not boiled!} and cooked sloooooowly over reaaaaaly low heat. If you cook them too fast, they will be hard and well, ...gritty. LOL! You want them to be smooth and creamy without a "bite" if that makes any sense at all.  
 
Ingredients
 
1 Cup Quaker Oats Quick 5-Minute Grits
2 Cups Water
3/4 Cup Half and Half {plus a few splashes at the end of cooking}
1/2 Cup Milk {I used 1%}
1/2 Stick Butter
1 Cup Shredded Gouda
Salt and Pepper to taste
 
 
 
{Start by shredding your cheese.  I have also {primarily} used cheddar for cheesy grits but this gouda is AMAZING in grits.  Gouda is probably my favorite cheese {unless it's smoked}.  The texture and mild buttery taste won me over years ago.}
 
{Add the water, milk, half and half and about a teaspoon of salt to a pot {that has a lid} over low heat.  Bring the liquid up to a high simmer, just below boil. If you let this boil, you will have a huge mess on your stove.}
 
{Turn the heat down as low as it will go and slowly stir in your cup of grits. A whisk is probably the best tool here but I couldn't find mine and used a fork, which works well. Stir, stir, stir as you slowly pour them in.}
 
{Continue to stir these so that they are perfectly creamy. Remember I said you have to babysit these.  The last thing you want is lumpy and clumpy grits.}
 
 
{Let them cook over a really low heat and continue to stir {every few minutes or so} for about 20-25 minutes.}
 
{Your grits will be thick and creamy without being lumpy and dry, which is the key! If they get too thick, too fast, your heat is too high.  They can be saved though.  Turn the heat down really low and add a bit of milk or water and stir them well.}

{Add in the butter, a few splashes of half and half, salt and plenty of fresh cracked black pepper.}
  
{Stir this well to incorporate.}
  
{Now for my favorite part – the cheese!}
 
{Mix well after adding your cheese and serve immediately.  What's better than piping hot, buttery and cheesy grits? NOTHING!}
 
 
{And as an added over-the-top measure, I enjoyed this bowl of decadence with crispy bacon. DROOL!} :)
 
How do you enjoy your grits?
 
xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥  
 
 
 

October 27, 2014

Autumn Layering with Adea!

 


 
{I had the pleasure of reviewing this luxurious layering top from Adea.  Their tagline is 'Everyday Luxury' which they pretty much nailed – this is a basic everyday layering top but adds a touch of luxe, which I can appreciate.  I chose the long sleeve crew neck in the color "buttercream".  I will be wearing this a ton in the upcoming cooler months.  Made of Italian microfiber, it fits the body like a glove and will be good for wearing under my jackets/sweaters, since I am known to dress inappropriately light in the winter. I call it my wintertime denial. Lol!}
 


 
{I rocked it with an open ivory cardigan from Target, which I have been wearing a LOT lately. Also, can I please take a moment to acknowledge my gratitude for jean jacket + chunky scarf weather? It's my second favorite time of year!  After my beloved summers, of course.}
 
{Buttercream Long Sleeve Crew Neck Layering Top ~ c/o Adea / Denim ~ Old Navy / Ivory Cardigan ~ Target / Bright Check Boucle Scarf ~ Asos / Nude Patent Oxfords ~ Zara / Denim Jacket ~ H&M / Black Faux Croc Satchel ~ Target}
 
xoxo, thanks for reading!
 
 


 

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