I'll finish off this month of in-season recipes with a great weeknight meal, perfect for pairing with grilled shrimp or a poached egg. Grits are stone ground corn, similar to polenta, which would also work in this recipe. The way I prepare them here, they are low in fat and vitamin rich, not what you think of when you here the word grits. I wanted to infuse the the meal with flavor so I finely chopped asparagus stems and sauteed them in a little olive oil and sea salt to combine with the water. I slowly added white grits to the water, bringing them to a boil, then covering and reducing the heat to low, stirring consistently until absorbed. I then added skim milk and stirred until creamy and fully cooked. All said it took about 25 minutes. Recipe below...
1 bunch of asparagus
1/2 cup white grits (now at Trader Joes)
1 1/2 cup water
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup low fat milk
Prep asparagus by removing woody part of stalk, and chopping in thin slices up to just below the tip. Reserve tips for roasting. Heat 1/2 tbsp of olive oil over medium-high heat in a deep saucepan. Add chopped asparagus, saute for about 5 minutes until soft. Add water and 1 tsp of cracked sea salt. Bring to a boil, gradually adding the grits, stirring constantly, bringing back to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Stir frequently until the water is absorbed. Add the milk and continue to cook, covered, stirring until creamy.
To prepare the asparagus tips preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss with remaining olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. Spread onto a sheet pan and roast for about 10 minutes until the heads are crisped and tender. Serve atop the grits, with grilled shrimp or a poached egg.