Quick Gumbo with Grilled Corn Grits + Smoky Chilied Brown Butter.
So if there was ever a Monday meal you needed to make, this is it.
Typically I think a lot of people feel like salads and lighter foods need to be Monday food, but I am just SO not one of those people. I love salad, but honestly today is not a lettuce in a bowl with some cheese kind of day. Nope, today is a grits with some butter and a quick, veggie packed, gumbo kind of day.
It’s total health food and you know it.
Hello, don’t you see all those pretty red peppers in there? And I mean fresh sweet corn mixed into the whole grainy (buttery) grits? See, healthiness in a bowl. And I am being serious here.
On a different note, again in all seriousness, I think I have convinced my dad to turn his land into a smaller farm. Complete with horses, cows, goats and chickens. I can see it in his face, he SO wants to quit the day job and be a full on farmer. I am right there with him….
It’s ok if you think I am crazy, re-reading this myself I am thinking the same thing, but with our chickens now laying eggs, I have this huge desire to add onto our little family of farm animals. I am telling you, I was totally meant for this whole farm life thing. Of course, just don’t ask me to clean the poop. That’s a job for the people who do not handle everyone’s food.
For now, I will have to be happy with our chickens. Which I totally am. I head down every morning before I hike to feed them and check for eggs. Their eggs are still pretty small right now, but their yolks are the prettiest shade of yellow. Honestly, I have not seen prettier yolks. They may be small, but they sure are cute. Over time the eggs should become larger and actually, only two of the chickens have started laying so hopefully we’ll be getting more than two eggs a day here pretty soon.
Thus far, I have only fried them. I am leaving the yolks extra runny because if you ask me, there is nothing better than a perfectly runny yolk. Especially when the eggs are fresh from your back yard and not even an hour old. I love the fact that we raised those chicken from day two of their lives and have gotten to watch them grow. It’s a pretty cool thing.
If I would have thought of it, I so would have put a fried egg on top of this gumbo. Next time I am totally doing that. Although, I am currently putting fried eggs on everything right now.
Egg or no egg though, this quick gumbo is DELICIOUS. It’s everything you crave and then some. Now, I have a gumbo recipe that I love and it will, hands down, always be my very favorite gumbo recipe, BUT that recipe requires me to sit in front of the stove for at least thirty minutes and just whisk. Just whisk and whisk without taking an eye off the pot. It sounds worse than it actually is, but on most given days I just do not have the time to do this.
So, I made a quick version. It’s still completely delicious, but in its own way. It’s unique, which I think is a good thing. Since the gumbo was a little different, I figured it needed a different side, and since gumbo is oh so southern, grits immediately came to mind.
Oh how I love grits you guys.
I am totally an old soul, and grits are entirely my thing. Now I don’t really know the difference between grits and polenta, to me they honestly are one and the same (is it texture or types of corn used? Does anyone know? I would really love to find out). Today I made real grits though. I cook polenta all the time (and have some more coming your way soon), so grits was a nice switch-up. But um, they really do taste like polenta.
And they also totally transform this dinner into something so special – as does the butter.
Once you have the gumbo started, start in on the grits. The whole meal only takes about forty minutes, but you have to be cooking the gumbo while making the grits.
Ok, so now you’ve got those creamy grits, that you top um with the gumbo. That is a good meal, but… it could be better. How?
Smoky chilied brown butter. Oh yes, I went there… and on a Monday too. You are either loving me or hating me right now, but I am hoping the majority is leaning towards the nicer side of things. It’s browned butter done savory and it’s the perfect final touch to this meal.
Quick Gumbo with Grilled Corn Grits + Smoky Chilied Brown Butter.
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour use a gluten free blend if needed
- 2 bell peppers diced (I used 1 red and 1 orange)
- 1 clove garlic minced or grated
- 1 small onion diced
- 1 cup fresh or frozen orka I used frozen
- 1 ounce large can diced tomatoes 14, I like to use fire roasted
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 tablespoon creole seasoning rounded
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (less if you do not want it too hot more if you do)
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4-6 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 pound andouille sausage sliced + halved again into half circles (NO substitutions)
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs cut into smaller pieces
- 1 tablespoons corn starch mixed with a 1/4 cup cold water
- 2 cups water
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 1 cup quick cooking grits
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 ears [grilled corn | https://www.halfbakedharvest.com/exactly-how-i-grill-my-corn-chipotle-lime-and-cotija-cheese-butter/]
- In a large soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking, until the flour begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Reduce the heat to low. Stir in the garlic, onion, orka and bell peppers, cook until the veggies begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, thyme, oregano, basil, creole seasoning, chili powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Cover pot and cook for 5 minutes.
- Stir in the broth, chicken and sausage. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the chicken and shred with a fork. Return the chicken to the gumbo. If a thicker consistency for your broth is desired, bring the gumbo to a boil and add the corn starch mixture. Simmer 1-2 minutes or until just slightly thickened. Simmer over low heat until ready to serve.
- While the gumbo is cooking, prepare the grits. In a small pot, bring the water, milk, and salt to a boil. Slowly stir the grits into the boiling mixture. Stir continuously until the grits are well mixed. Let the pot return to a boil, cover and lower the heat to low, cook for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add more milk if necessary. Once the grits are creamy, stir in the butter and grilled corn kernels. Season with salt and pepper.
- To make the smoky chilied brown butter, heat a heavy-bottomed 10-12 inch skillet, add butter and melt over medium heat until just browned. Butter will melt, foam, and froth, and then begin to brown along the bottom. Whisk the browned bits off of the bottom of the pan. Stir in the smoked paprika and chili powder.
- To serve, divide the grits among bowls. Top with gumbo, drizzle with butter. Garnish with basil if desired. Enjoy!
Quick Gumbo with Grilled Corn Grits – trust me, you need to make this tonight.