Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Flavors in our Lives

This past weekend I catered a birthday party for a new client. We began talking about the event in August so we had plenty of time to perfect the menu. My client, Carolyn, has lived in several cities in the south and thought that foods from each of the places she had lived would be a fun twist on a menu. I agreed.

As you can see from the menu, we were serving beef, pork, and shrimp so we decided to use a "small bite" approach. Each of the menu items, with the exception of the Caramel Pecan Cake, were mini servings.
We had Fresh pico ge gallo and guacamole to top the mini-shredded beef tacos. 
The hit of the evening were the shrimp and grits cakes topped with creamy Remoulade. I could not keep them coming out of the kitchen fast enough! I have to admit that these were also my favorite. I loved the flavors, especially the Remoulade, and they truly were a one-bite (well, okay, one bite for the men) appetizer. I will definitely put these on future client menus.

Shrimp and Grits Cakes

3 1/2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup yellow grits
3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons butter, divided
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound cooked peeled and deveined 31/50 count shrimp
1 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning (you can also use Cajun spice seasoning)

Bring water to boil in a heavy-bottomed pot, add salt and reduce flame to medium. Slowly add grits and whisk until smooth and simmering. Reduce heat to very low, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Slowly whisk in cheese and 1 tablespoon of butter. Pour mixture into a jelly roll pan lines with parchment paper or a Silpat and spread to about 3/4-inch thickness. Cool until firm.

In large skillet, add olive oil and heat. Toss shrimp with seasoning and add to pan, heating until shrimp is hot throughout.

Using a 1-inch round cookie cutter, cut grits cakes. Brown cakes in remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy skillet.

To plate, place one shrimp on top of grits cake and dress with a little creamy Remoulade.

Adapted from Whole Foods Market, Recipe 2255

Creamy Remoulade

Yields 1 2/3 cups

1 cup good quality mayonnaise, full fat
1/3 cup Creole or Dijon Mustard  (I used Dijon coarse ground.)
1/3 cup horseradish (not creamy)
1 tablespoon of fresh Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 teaspoon hot sauce, or to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon.)

Place all ingredients into a small glass bowl and stir. Cover and refrigerate overnight to blend flavors. Serve with your choice of seafood or fish. This is especially good with crab cakes.

Source -  Ethnic-Spicy-Food-And-More.com


  1. They look lovely and I am sure, taking into consideration your experience, they taste exceptionally.

  2. Thank you. This was one of the most fun events I have done!