Ft. Sumpter ~ Civil War Begins ~ Shrimp & Grits

Today, in 1861, Confederate troops opened fire on Ft. Sumpter in Charleston Harbor.  The Civil War began.  Two days later, the Union general surrendered, and the garrison of soldiers were evacuated.  As Publius said of the war: it was widely expected to end quickly … it didn’t.

I highly recommend you visit this site to learn more about the Civil War.  They even have an interactive battle map to play with!

While you explore the Civil War,  you might want to make some traditional low country cuisine.  For me, it’s all about shrimp & grits today.  In a Bobby Flay episode a few years ago on the Food Network, Bobby was cooking with a woman named Martha Nesbit.  This is her recipe, and it’s wonderful.

SHRIMP & GRITS (serves 4)

4 cups water
salt & pepper, to taste
1 cup stone-ground grits
3 Tbs. butter
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
6 slices bacon, chopped
4 tsp. lemon juice
2 Tbs. chopped parsley
1 cup thinly sliced scallions
1 large clove garlic, minced

Bring water to a boil.  Add salt & pepper.  Add grits and cook until water is absorbed, about 20 to 25 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in butter and cheese.

Rinse shrimp and pat dry.  Fry the bacon in a large skillet until browned; drain well.  Add shrimp to the bacon fat in the skillet.  Cook just until the shrimp turn pink.  Add lemon juice, chopped bacon, parsley, scallions and garlic.  Saute for 3 minutes.

Spoon grits into a serving bowl.  Add shrimp mixture and mix well.  Serve immediately.

Go Eat Your History!