I was not raised as a southern girl growing up in Oklahoma but in the 3.5 years I spent in Georgia going to college southern comfort food wore off on me. Case in point grits, I love grits. I always loved cornbread and corn so perhaps finding grits was only a matter of time. I’ll never forget the first time I had grits at a fancy southern restaurant at the town square in Carrollton, Ga. Thick and creamy almost like mashed potatoes but with more texture and more butter.
It’s sad to say, but most people don’t like grits because they have never had good grits! Well my friend you have come to the right place today. Southern Shrimp and cheddar grits vegan style. A speciality in the south and one of my favorite week night quick fix dinners.
Vegan Shrimp? Ok not quite real shrimp but with a texture and taste nearly spot on VegeCyper offers Vegan King Prawn made of Yam flour and seasonings like paprika. I discovered them at the NYC Vegetarian Food Festival last month. Although the vegan king prawns aren’t protein packed they are low calorie!
For the “cheddar” grits you start out simply with Quaker Oatmeal quick cooking grits add extra water to make them creamy then a little salt and nutritional yeast to get the cheddar flavor. If you’re wondering what nutritional yeast is I’ll let wikipedia fill you in:
“It is a source of protein and vitamins, especially the B-complex vitamins, and is a complete protein. It is also naturally low in fat andsodium and is free of sugar, dairy, and gluten. Sometimes nutritional yeast is fortified with Vitamin B12.
Nutritional yeast has a strong flavor that is described as nutty, cheesy, or creamy, which makes it popular as an ingredient in cheese substitutes. It is often used by vegans in place of cheese. It can be used in many recipes in place of cheese, such as mashed and fried potatoes, as well as put into scrambled tofu as a substitute for scrambled eggs. Another popular use is as a topping for popcorn. Some movie theaters offer it along with salt or cayenne pepper as a popcorn condiment.”
In other words its something you need to have in your kitchen. I rarely suggest you buy what I call non-normal ingredients, but you should definitely buy some of this. In addition to being used in my vegan cheddar grits you can use it for sprinkling on salads, veggies or any dish to up its nutritional stats. It has a rich nutty cheese like taste, in fact it is the main ingredient in my spicy nacho cheese spread.
Not all of my recipes come together in 10 minutes but this one does. It is a triple threat recipe, quick, tasty and healthy.
Shrimp and Cheddar Grits- Vegan
1 Package of Vegan King Prawns
2 Servings of Quick Cooking Grits (check the serving size on your box)
1.5 Times the Amount of Water the Instructions Says
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast Powder (If using flakes use 5 Tablespoons)
A Pinch of Paprika for topping
Salt to taste
1) Bring the waster to a boil and stir in your grits. Cook the grits as the package instructions say but add an extra 2-4 minutes of cooking time uncovered. This will make the grits nice and creamy.
2) While your grits are cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet on high-medium heat. Saute the vegan prawns for about 8 minutes. You will know they are done when they get a grilled look on each side. Remove from skillet and set aside to eat.
3) When the grits are done cooking remove them from heat and stir in the nutritional yeast.
4) Load up your plate with a heaping serving of cheddar grits and shrimp. Sprinkle with salt and paprika.
I served by meal with some sautéed spinach. Yum yum yummmm!
What is your favorite comfort food? Have you ever tried to make a better for you version of it?