Gone Fishing – for the true story on NC Seafood (recipes too!)

Tomorrow morning – Monday, May 8 – I’ll be heading to Morehead City, NC and surrounding areas in Eastern and Coastal NC for a few days with a small media group hosted by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture.

We’ll be touring aquaculture farms, seafood producers, a catfish farm, community supported fishery, and hopefully, talk to some folks that fish our waters for a living. I’ve got questions.

Join me by following along as I post throughout the trip on Carolina Epicurean social channels: Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carolinaepicurean/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CarolinaEpicurean ), and Twitter: https://twitter.com/CarolinaEpicur .

Chef Bud Taylor
Image: Stacey Sprenz

And, as it happens, I got a hold of two terrific NC seafood recipes from Chef Bud Taylor of The Bistro at Topsail just in time for this immersion in to NC Seafood.

Want more from Chef Bud Taylor? He’ll be at the Wilmington Food and Wine Festival on Saturday, May 13th. He will be doing a cooking demo at 3pm that day as well. Here’s the link to purchase tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2755585

Shrimp and Grits, The Bistro at Topsail
Image: Tessa Nguyen

Bistro Shrimp & Grits by Chef Bud Taylor

GRITS:

• 1 CUP STONE GROUND YELLOW GRITS
• (ADLUH MILLS, ANSON MILLS OR OTHER QUALITY BRAND, DON’T USE QUICK GRITS)
• 1 CUP WHOLE MILK
• 3 CUPS COLD WATER
• 6 TABLESPOONS BUTTER
• 1 CUP GRATED ASIAGO OR PARMESAN
• SALT & PEPPER

SHRIMP & SAUCE

• 1 POUND LOCAL SHRIMP
• 1 GREEN TOMATO – cut into ½ inch dice
• 1 TABLESPOON MINCED SHALLOT (MAY SUB RED ONION)
• ¼ TEASPOON MINCED GARLIC
• 4-6 oz. NC COUNTRY HAM- CUT INTO SMALL STRIP
• ½ CUP DRY WHITE WINE
• 2 CUPS SHRIMP STOCK (MAY SUB SEAFOOD BASE)
• UNSALTED COLD BUTTER- CUT INTO CUBES
• 2 TABLESPOONS THINLY SLICED SCALLION
• 1 TEASPOON EACH DICED FRESH
• THYME
• BASIL
• PARSLEY

Cooking Instructions:

GRITS:
• In stock pot bring water, milk & butter to a boil
• Slowly whisk in grits and return to a boil for 1-2 minutes
• Reduce heat to a high simmer and cook 30-45 minutes or until grits are tender
• Remove from heat and stir in cheese
• Season to taste with salt & pepper

SHRIMP:
• While grits are cooking peel and clean shrimp.
• Season with salt & pepper and set aside

SAUCE: (sauce can be made in advance and kept warm)
• In hot saute pan place 2 T butter, shallot, garlic and country ham and cook until lightly brown
• De-glaze pan with white whine
• Add green tomatoes to pan and cook approx 1 minute
• Add shrimp stock and 2 T butter and let reduce by ¼
• Add scallions & fresh herbs
• Remove from heat
• Finish sauce by stirring several cubes of cold butter into sauce, until thickens slightly
• Season to taste with Salt & Pepper

In separate pan:
• Heat pan
• Add 2 T butter and seasoned shrimp
• Cook just until shrimp turn pink on bottom then turn shrimp and remove pan from heat.
• Shrimp will finish cooking with residual heat from pan

TO SERVE:
• Toss cooked shrimp into sauce
• Divide grits into 4 bowls
• Spoon sauce & shrimp mixture equally into bowls on top of grits. Do not stir up.
• Garnish with fresh chive (optional)

Pan Roasted Grouper with Orange Braised Leeks & Vadouvan Jus

Leeks:
4-6 Leeks green parts removed
zest and juice of one orange
3 T unsalted butter
Salt & Pepper
pinch sugar

  • Slice lengthwise through center keeping root end intact.
  • Soak root end up in bowl of cool water for 1 hour.
  • remove from bowl and rinse under cool running water, fanning each leaf to remove any remaining grit.
  • Slice about ½ inch thick
  • Melt half the butter into large skillet or saute pan, add leeks and cook on low heat for 2-4 minutes. (do not let leeks brown)
  • Add orange zest & juice
  • Add remainder of butter, continue to cook until leeks are soft and semi transparent.
  • Salt, pepper and sugar to taste
  • Serve immediately

Vadouvan Jus:

1 T butter
1 small shallot diced
1 clove garlic diced
1 cup dry white wine
2 cups heavy cream
3 T Vadouvan Spice

  • Put shallot, garlic, butter in medium sauce pan, cook for 1 minute, add wine and bring to a boil
  • Cook until liquid is almost gone, about 5-7 minutes
  • Add cream and vadouvan spice bring to a simmer, reduce heat and simmer until sauce coats the back of a spoon.

Strain into container and use immediately or can be stored in refrigerator for up to 2 days.
Use double boiler to reheat

Pan Roasted Grouper:

(4) 4 oz. Grouper filet about 1 inch thick
2T butter
¼ cup canola oil
salt & pepper

  • Season fish with salt & pepper
  • Heat skillet and add oil and butter to pan
  • Place fish skin side up and in pan and sear until golden brown
  • Reduce heat and continue to cook fish until cooked about half way through. Fish will start to turn white on the sides.
  • Turn fish and allow to finish cooking until just flaky.
  • Do not overcook, fish will continue to cook after you remove it from the pan.

To serve:
Divide leeks equally among 4 plates, place fish at angle on leeks. Finish with just around leeks and fish

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