Fleur de Lis

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Monday, February 24, 2014

Grillades and Cheese Grits

Grillades (pronounced GREE-ahds) and cheese grits are perfect for a brunch menu and most definitely fit the bill for a delicious main course at dinner. Grillades, the French word for grilled, is a little misleading here. Simply put, grillades are small pieces of veal, round steak or pork that are pounded thin, seared in hot oil, then simmered in a spicy roux based Creole sauce (or gravy). The long cooking time,combined with the thin pieces of meat, result in melt in your mouth deliciousness.

1 1/2 - 2 pounds well trimmed top round of beef
1 t. black pepper
3/4 t. salt
3 T. vegetable or canola oil
2 T. all purpose flour
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups beef stock
1 (16 oz.) can whole tomatoes, in juice
1 t. dried thyme
1/2 t. cayenne
2 bay leaves
1 t. red wine vinegar
4 green onions (white and tender green parts) for garnish, if desired

Cut the meat into 1 1/2 inch thick slices, then cut the slices into approximately 2 1/2 inch squares. Pound the meat between two pieces of plastic wrap or waxed paper into thin pieces about double their original size. Sprinkle the beef on both sides with the black pepper and salt.

In a large skillet or cast iron Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Cook the meat, in batches, over medium high heat, or until well browned on both sides. Remove the meat to a plate.  

Sprinkle the flour into the pan drippings. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes, or until the flour is lightly browned.  

Add the onions, bell pepper, celery and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently for 5 minutes or until the vegetables began to soften.  Add the been stock and the tomatoes with their juice, breaking up the tomatoes with the side of a spoon.  

Stir in the thyme, cayenne and bay leaves. Return the meat o the sauce. Cook, covered, over low heat for 1  -1 1/2 hour; stirring occasionally, or until the meat is fork tender. Uncover the pot during the last 15 minutes of cooking to thicken the sauce slightly. Stir in the vinegar.

Transfer the grillades and sauce to a serving platter and sprinkle with the sliced green onions.

For the grits:

If you want to use stone ground grits and have lots of time, they are your best choice for this dish. A very close runner up is quick cooking grits. I followed the package directions for the amounts for 8 servings.  

I used half water/half milk. And when the grits were thickened and ready to eat, I slowly stirred in 2 cups of grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese.

Oh yes. Delicious with the Grillades and Sauce spooned over the top.

adapted from The Best of New Orleans, a Cookbook by Brooke Dojny

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