Cheese Grits with Hominy–Use Your Crock Pot

Cheese Grits with Hominy is a corny bonanza and another super recipe created in the face of adversity. I was panicked that we wouldn’t have enough grits to serve to the crowd and there wasn’t time to cook another stone-ground batch. What to do?If I’d had quick grits in the pantry I would have stirred them into the stone ground batch. That’s like topping off a half glass of nice wine with a cheap one. Glad I didn’t have any.Then I spotted two cans of hominy on the shelf so I tossed them in with the grits. Hominy’s fabulous corn flavor is just like stone-ground grits so it’s a great match and a way to stretch the grits by at least five servings. No pre-cooking required.Problem solved, plenty of grits. Until we served them. Our hominy grits were gone in a flash. Seconds, thirds, everyone went wild. A word about cooking grits. We strongly recommend the Crock-Pot and a bag of stone ground grits. Cooking grits on the stove grits takes constant watching and stirring.In the Crock-Pot you leave them alone.

HOW TO COOK GRITS

“Cooking” grits is just the simple process of rehydrating corn. Grits, water, and salt. Anything else is extra, optional, and often over-complicated.The crock-pot is a steady, reliable heat source for cooking grits. It’s hands-free cooking, won’t burn the corn, or wreck the pot. Overnight on “low” or early Sunday morning on “high” for 3 to 4 hours with plenty of water allows the corn to fully rehydrate and develop that creamy, lush stone ground grits taste and feel, no cream, milk, cheese, or broth necessary. Humans have been successfully cooking ground corn in water for centuries, so a “recipe’ for grits is about as necessary as a “recipe” for scrambled eggs. A good grits-to-water rule of thumb is 1 cup of grits to 4 cups water. When cooking overnight we add a little extra water, about a cup, in case they need more while we’re sleeping. If you remove the cover to find a dry top layer the next morning just add a little water and stir it up. You can’t really over-cook grits. There are so many wonderful things you can add to the grits once they’re cooked. Roasted green chile, pimientos, pretty much any cheese you’ve got in the fridge (Swiss, Cheddar, Parmesan, etc.). Add crumbled sausage, ham chunks (or bits of country ham), or cooked bacon. Artichoke hearts would be lovely.It makes sense that creamy grits might benefit from a little extra texture so why not double up on the hominy flavor with the big puffy kernels of hominy. Add a can and monitor the reaction. It’ll be a good one.

Ingredients

1 cup grits (stone ground taste best, but take much longer to cook)
2 cans (15.5 ounces each) hominy, drained
1/4 cup butter (half a stick)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1/2 cup milk, or as needed
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
Salt, to taste

Instructions

Cook the grits in a large saucepan according to the package directions until thick and creamy. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the hominy, butter, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard.
Heat through, stirring frequently and adding a little milk if the mixture seems too thick.
Stir in the cheese and continue stirring until it is completely melted.
Add salt, as needed.

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