Cheese Grits Loaded With Pimento Cheese & Corn Bread Crumbles
From Chef Jeff McInnis of Root & Bone
“The recipe we are sharing takes corn and cheese to the next level. We love pimento cheese at Root & Bone and use it in several different ways. When putting it in the grits it gives a creamy smooth richness with some pepper and extra flavor. Also the roasted corn acts as a little burst of fresh sweet corn which pairs well against the dried grits and corn bread crust,” says Chef Jeff McInnis of Root & Bone in New York City.
- 4 cups of grits (recipe below)
- 8 Tbsp. Pimento Cheese (recipe below)
- 4 Tbsp. Corn Bread Crumbles (recipe below)
- 2 ears corn on the cob
- 1/2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- Pinch of salt & pepper
- 1 Tbsp. finely chopped chives
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cups yellow stone-ground grits
- 1/8 cup heavy cream
- 1 oz. unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/ 8 teaspoon black pepper
Bring stock and milk just to a simmer in a heavy saucepan. Meanwhile, cover grits with water in a large bowl and whisk vigorously. Let stand 30 seconds, then skim any chaff that has floated to surface with a fine-mesh sieve. Drain grits well in a fine-mesh sieve and whisk into simmering milk mixture. Reduce heat to low and simmer grits, partially covered, stirring often with a heatproof rubber spatula, until grits are tender and thickened to the consistency of loose oatmeal, about an hour (stir more toward end of cooking to avoid scorching). If grits become too thick before they are tender and creamy, thin with milk or cream). Stir in cream, butter, and salt. Remove from heat and keep warm.
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 2 lbs. grated sharp cheddar
- 1.5 cup mayonnaise
- 10 oz. roasted bell peppers, chopped
- ½ Spanish onion, grated
- 1.5 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. black pepper ground
Place cream cheese in an electric mixer and beat until smooth and fluffy. Add all of the cheddar, mayo, bell peppers, onion, salt and pepper and beat until well blended. Taste for seasoning. Refrigerate until needed.
- 5 oz. Canola Oil, plus more for greasing pan
- 6 oz. white granulated sugar
- 1 whole egg
- 4 oz. buttermilk
- 1tsp baking soda
- 6 oz. cornmeal
- 6 oz. all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F grease a 8 x 8 square pan with Canola Oil. Gently melt Canola Oil in large pot. Remove from heat and stir in sugar. Quickly add egg and whisk until well blended. Combine buttermilk with baking soda and stir into mixture in pan. Stir in cornmeal, flour, and salt until well blended and few lumps remain. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 -30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Corn Bread Crumbles:
- 1 Corn Bread (recipe above)
Simply crumble the cornbread into one-inch pieces on a sheet pan. Place the sheet pan in the oven at 250 degrees F. Toast off until crispy and reserve until needed.
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Season the corn on the cob with oil and salt. Place in oven and roast until tender (about 15 minutes) Remove corn from oven and cool to room temp. Cut the corn off of the cob and reserve. Using 4 8 oz. size ramekins fill with hot grits. Place corn evenly over the top of the grits. Then top with 1 or 2 tbsp. of pimento cheese on each ramekin. Then top with a tablespoon of corn bread crumbles on top of each. Place in oven for about 10 minutes until cheese is hot and bubbly and crumbs are toasted brown. Remove from oven and top with chives. Serve hot & enjoy.
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