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Pork Grillades and Cheesy Grits

Ingredients

For the grillades:

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour

1 tablespoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch-thick steaks, then pounded to ½-inch-thick medallions

¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil

1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1-ince piece ginger, peeled and minced

3 garlic cloves

½ stalk lemongrass, lightly beaten with the back of a knife

2 bay leaves

1 lime leaf

1 tablespoon chopped oregano

1 tablespoon creole seasoning

2 large ripe tomatoes, diced (can substitute with canned)

2 cups beef stock or low sodium beef brother

1 tablespoon salt

Garnish: ½ cup thinly sliced green onion

For the cheesy grits:

4 cups water

1 cup stone-ground grits

4 tablespoons butter

½ pound cheddar cheese, grated

3 garlic cloves, roasted and smashed into a paste

1 tablespoon salt

Directions

  1. Make the grits: In a medium pot, bring water to a boil over high heat. Whisk in grits and stir until they begin to thicken, about 3 minutes. Cover pot and reduce heat to low. Cook grits for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching. Once grits are tender, remove from heat and whisk in butter, cheese, and roasted garlic. Season with salt to taste. Keep warm until ready to serve.
  2. Make the grillades: In a shallow bowl, combine 1 cup flour, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Lightly dredge pounded pork medallions in flour, shaking lightly to remove any excess.
  3. In a large pot or cast-iron dutch oven, heat ¼ cup canola oil over medium-high heat. When oil begins to smoke, add enough medallions to cover the bottom of the pot in one layer. (You will have to do this in batches.) Cook until medallions are well browned on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a platter or baking sheet and repeat with remaining pork. (The moisture from each new batch should keep the leftover flour bits from burning. Do not remove those bits, as they will be the base of your roux.)
  4. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil to pot, followed by the onion, bell pepper, celery, and remaining 2 tablespoons flour. Cook over medium-high heat until aromatics begin to caramelize, being sure to scrape the bottom and sides to loosen any browned bits, about 4 minutes. Add ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add lemongrass, bay leaves, lime leaf, oregano, creole seasoning, and tomatoes and cook until tomatoes begin to break down, about 4 minutes. Stir in stock and bring to a simmer.
  5. Return pork to pot, cover, and reduce heat to low. At this point the meat and sauce may be transferred to a slow cooker and cooked all day or overnight. Otherwise, cook over low heat until grillades are fork-tender, stirring occasionally, at least 2 hours. Once meat is tender, remove bay leaves, lime leaf, and lemongrass. Season the finished grillades with salt to taste.
  6. Serve grillades over warm cheesy grits and garnish with sliced green onion.
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