How to make garlic cheese grits like a New Orleans native

BY PATSY R. BRUMFIELD – THE SOUTHFACIN’ COOK 

My mother, Betty, wasn’t the world’s greatest cook but she did a few things very well. One was garlic-cheese grits, which is a great side substitute for potatoes or rice or all by itself.

Patsy R. Brumfield The Southfacin' Cook

Patsy R. Brumfield
The Southfacin’ Cook

My daughter, Margaret, once had the flu more than 10 hours away from home and only had the strength to make one thing to sustain her. You got it – these garlic-cheese grits. She forever sings their praises and asked me to make them for this blog.

Garlic-cheese grits is perfect for a couple of folks or for a buffet brunch/dinner for company. You also can make the dish ahead of time, then pop it into the oven for baking later.

BETTY’S GARLIC-CHEESE GRITS

EQUIPMENT

  • medium-size sauce pan with lid
  • food processor (if you need to grate block cheese)
  • whisk
  • 9×12 casserole dish
  • cereal bowl
  • measuring equipment
  • wooden spoon

INGREDIENTS

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

GRITS:

  • 1 cup grits (I use 5-minute. Never use instant.)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt

REST OF IT:

  • 8 ounce roll or block of garlic cheddar cheese (available premade in stores)
  • 1 stick butter or margarine
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk

LET’S GET STARTED

Preheat oven to 300.

Make your grits according to the package. Here’s my advice for novices: After you pour the grits into boiling salted water, set 5 minutes on your timer and whisk about 30 seconds. Cover, reduce heat to simmer. After about 2 minutes, carefully lift the lid and whisk again because you’ll find the grits has settled to the bottom. With about 1 minute to go, do the same again. Be careful because hot-popping grits will really hurt.

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

When grits are done, add butter/margarine and grated cheese. (Yes, I am using the same model food processor as you see on “Golden Girls.” Thanks, Mama.) Stir to melt butter and cheese into grits.

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

In a cereal bowl, beat your eggs well, then add milk and beat some more.

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

Turn off the heat under your cheesy grits. Slowly stir small amounts of egg/milk mixture into grits. Taste to see if you want more salt. (Unlikely it needs more but they are your tastebuds.)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

Pour into casserole dish.

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

Bake 1 hour. Enjoy.

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin' Cook)

how to make garlic-cheese grits (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/Southfacin’ Cook)

(NOTE – I’ve never done this, but I suspect that if you poured the grits mixture onto an inch-deep, buttered baking sheet and baked for 20-30 minutes, you’d have something like polenta, which you could cut into rectangles or other shapes and serve fancy with chic omelets, barbecue or whatever.)

Come back to NewinNOLA.com every week for “Southfacin’ Cook,” where Patsy explains the basics to Southern cooking and eating. Contact her with suggestions, questions or requests at patsy.brumfield@gmail.com.

Previous recipes from Patsy:

• Hummus
• Gumbo
• Quiche

9 thoughts on “How to make garlic cheese grits like a New Orleans native

  1. Molly McCorkindale says:

    Have you tried to buy that garlic cheese in a roll lately? Kraft foods no longer makes it! So irritating because it’s definitely the best for making cheese grits.

    • @Molly – Patsy said she hasn’t been able to find the roll lately so she’s had to swap to a block. I’m going grocery shopping later so I’m going to check out the cheese aisle and see what I can find.

      What do you use now that you can’t get the roll?

      Thanks for reading!

      • Molly says:

        Actually, I haven’t made anything that required that cheese roll in a long time. I saw a discussion on one of the foodie websites about a year or so ago and it was full of comments from Southern women who used it in several recipes and who complained that Kraft no longer makes it. There are copy recipes on the internet, but nothing is quite as easy as that old-fashioned garlic cheese roll. Darn it! I was just hoping that Kraft had heard from us and had brought it back…

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