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Bar Americain's Gulf Shrimp & Grits

Serves: 4

4-5 cups shrimp stock or chicken stock or water
1 cup yellow stone ground cornmeal
1 cup grated white cheddar cheese
¼ cup heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper
3 green onions, thinly sliced, for garnish

1. Bring 4 cups of the water and 2 teaspoons of salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Slowly whisk in the grits and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking until the grits are soft and have lost their gritty texture, whisking every few minutes, 15-20 minutes. If the mixture becomes too thick, add remaining water and continue cooking until absorbed. Add the cheese and heavy cream and whisk until smooth; season with salt and pepper. 
2. Divide the grits among 4 bowls and top each with 3 shrimp. Drizzle the top with some of the bacon/garlic oil (that the shrimp were sautéed in) and sprinkle with some of the green onion.

Sautéed Shrimp
½ pound thick cut bacon, cut into lardon
2 tablespoons pure olive oil
20 large shrimp, shelled and deveined
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Place bacon in a medium pan over medium heat and cook until golden brown and crisp and the fat has rendered. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels.
2. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the pan and place back on the heat. Add the olive oil and increase the heat to high, season the shrimp with salt and pepper, add the shrimp and the garlic to the pan and sauté until golden brown on both sides and just cooked through, 1-2 minutes per side. Remove shrimp to a plate. Reserve the garlic oil to drizzle over the finished dish.

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