I've been making some classic Southern recipes in my Brooklyn kitchen in preparation for Paula Deen's new book, and yesterday I made a dessert that really threw me for a loop: Grits Pie. Now, before you get the wrong idea, this Yankee has gobbled more than her share of grits and I've always cleaned my plate. Shrimp and Grits, Cheesy Grits, Fried Ham and Grits - are you noticing a pattern? (Hint: they're all savory.)
I'd never even considered sugary grits as an option.
This impossible confection was custardy and dense, and sliced up into nice, neat, even wedges. It had a creamy, milky vanilla flavor with a delicate hint of nutmeg and subtle corn chewiness. I don't want to go overboard in my praise (part of the appeal is its shock value because it was so unexpected), let's just say that this pie has broadened my horizons. It made me think, what other kind of grain pies have I been missing out on? Grape Nuts? Farro? Rice Pudding Pie? I'll do a little snooping and get back to you...
In the meantime, check out the recipe here. And just a little note: though (obviously) I think the pie is great as is, topped with a sprinkle of nutmeg (which Paula lists as optional in her dessert cookbook but for some reason omits on her website) - it might be even better with a little extra element of zing. Maybe some freshly grated citrus zest stirred into the filling. Playing with it would be a great excuse to make another.