Friday, April 8, 2016

Creamy Goat Cheese and Chive Grits

I totally love grits. It's become sort of a joke in the cookbook-swap group that I belong to - if there's a grits recipe in one of the books, I'm probably going to make it.

When I got The Up South Cookbook by Nicole A. Taylor, I was happy to see that there were several grits recipes to choose from.

Or, actually, I made two of them. The first one had cheddar cheese and blue cheese mixed in. That was really good with the hint of blue cheese. But the interesting thing about that recipe was that it used corn stock - basically corn cobs simmered to make a corn-only vegetable stock.

At this time of year, I don't have fresh corn hanging around, so I used a basic vegetable stock. But when fresh corn is in abundance, I'm going to make corn stock for sure.

So anyway, the next grits recipe that struck my fancy was one that called for goat cheese and chives. The flavors sounded good, so I decided to make it. The first time ... the goat cheese I had on hand seemed a bit off. I ended up making grits with feta cheese instead. It was good, but not particularly pretty.

So I bought goat cheese. I had chives growing, so I harvested a nice handful.

And then I decided to make the grits in my Instant Pot. Why, yes, I might be getting addicted to that thing. I'm having a blast creating and adapting recipes for it. And it's nice to be able to have food done quickly.

These grits are super creamy. Probably the creamiest I've made since a slow cooker grits recipe or maybe the Tyler Florence grits recipe that included actual cream. But this one was faster and easier than either one, and required no stirring.

Right out of the pot, these were super-creamy and loose. Just like any other grits, they got a bit solid when refrigerated. This is great if you want to fry the grits, but I like them soft. That softness and looseness can be adjusted by adding more liquid (water or milk are my usual choices) as you reheat.

Creamy Grits with Goat Cheese and Chives
Adapted from The Up South Cookbook (Baked Grits and Fresh Chives) by Nicole A. Taylor

4 cups water
1 teaspoon Better Than Bullion vegetable or chicken stock concentrate
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup coarse grits
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
4 ounces goat cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives

Put the water, stock concentrate, salt, grits, butter, and pepper in the Instant Pot. Give it a stir. Place the lid on, make sure the knob is set for sealing, and push the porridge button. Make sure it's set for 20 minutes.

When the time is up, let the cooker stay on the "keep warm" setting for 15 minutes before turning the machine off and releasing any remaining steam.

Remove the cover and stir or whisk the grits. They will look a little watery, but they'll be nice and creamy after you stir. Add the goat cheese and stir until the cheese is melted into the grits. Add the chives and stir. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.


The recipe in the book calls for baking the grits in ramekins with an egg on top, until the egg is cooked. You could also serve the grits with a fried or poached egg on top. Or just serve them plain.