Friday, February 24, 2012

fantasy friday: strawberries 'n' cream grits from jackson

"That's all a grit is, a vehicle. For whatever it is you rather be eating."
Aibileen Clark
from The Help
by Kathryn Stockett

That's what Aibileen says as she adds strawberries and whipped cream to Mae Mobley's grits to make them special for her birthday. Aibeleen is the best, isn't she?


And what she says about grits is so true. I can remember making grits when I was small, and loading them up with enough butter and maple syrup to fuel a small rocket ship. Luckily, this recipe isn't quite so weighed down.


I suspect that Aibileen started with grits that had butter and sugar in them. To healthify this birthday treat, I did not replace the grits, but I did leave out those other base ingredients. The only sugar in it comes from fresh strawberries, and the whipped cream is replaced with coconut whipped cream. Sweet and rich, my version is what I imagine Mae Mobley's birthday breakfast tasted like, with a slightly healthier list of ingredients.


I loved both the book and movie versions of The Help. It was all of the things a good story should be...touching, exciting, educational.

But goodness gracious, most of all I loved how so many things revolved around food. Caramel cake, chocolate pie, fried chicken. You can bet I'll be working on healthier versions of such things. When I put the book down, I couldn't wait for strawberries to be in season before I tried making this treat. And maybe you can't either. But if you can, you should. The strawberries make this dish.


The coconut whipped cream recipe should make enough for about four servings of strawberries 'n' cream grits. But the grits recipe serves one.

Full of healthy fats, antioxidants, and vitamins, this dish is as healthy as it is delicious. And is it ever delicious...


Strawberries 'n' Cream Grits

Ingredients:
1/4 cup instant grits
dash of salt
5 drops liquid stevia or other sweetener, to taste
1/4 lb. fresh strawberries, cleaned and chopped
coconut whipped cream (recipe below)

Combine grits with 3/4 cup water and salt. Heat on high in the microwave for 2-4 minutes, until grits reach your desired consistency. Keep an eye out that they don't overflow! Stir in the stevia.

Top with coconut whipped cream (recipe below) and strawberries.


Coconut Whipped Cream

Ingredients:
1 can full-fat coconut milk
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
5 drops liquid stevia

The night before you intend to use the cream, open your can of coconut milk and put it in the fridge, uncovered. This will allow all the fat to rise to the top. If you're lucky, like me, the parts will be separated as soon as you open the can. If that's the case, just scoop out the fat into a bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, put the coconut fat into a mixing bowl. It should be fairly thick,  like Crisco. Add 5 drops of stevia and the vanilla extract. Beat on high until well mixed and creamy.


Just like Mae Mobley, Maus turns 3 next Wednesday. I think I'll make her some of these grits to celebrate...and then eat them myself. ;-)

~~~

Want to join in? Just grab the image below to include in your Fantasy Friday post, and link it back to this page. Be sure to leave a link to your post, so we can see what fantasy world you've recreated!

11 comments:

  1. Fantasy Friday! Sign us up for cocktails with Don, Joan and Peggy of Mad Men! http://andtophertoo.blogspot.com/2012/02/happy-friday-you-deserve-happy-hour.html

    Cheers! Cullen & Oliver

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  2. Yum! Can you believe I've never had grits? I guess that's what happens when you grow up in the midwest! This looks like a luscious treat of a breakfast. And beautiful, too!

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  3. Oh nom, that looks delightful. I've never had grits done in a 'sweet' way - all of my experiences have been with savoury ingredients. Like cheese and shrimp - YUM!

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  4. Oh man, first of all I could not put this book down when I read it!! Secondly, I absolutely love Strawberries and all of the lovely pictures you posted literally started making my stomach growl- I think I might try this for tomorrow morning!

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  5. Another fab Fantasy Friday post. LOVE this one.

    1. Love The Help

    2. LOVE Aibileene.

    3. LOVE how you did this.

    It looks delish.

    See you tomorrow! :)

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  6. That's awesome. I loved that movie (and book). Great idea to pair with the fruit!

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  7. This gives me motivation to A. Read the book/see the movie (whichever I find time for first) and B. Its been a good, long time since I had some grits... I think this needs to be in my life.

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  8. My goodness! So many grit newbies... As an Atlanta girl married to a New Orleans boy I think we have responsibility to pick up this thread ASAP! Grits are great! Cheesy, sugary or otherwise. ;)

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  9. I was thinking that I had never heard of eating grits until I moved down here -- then I thought about where you're from and it makes sense that you'd have grits as a child. What's interesting is that friends of mine joke about opening a book shop bakery and want their baked goods based of books. I thought The Help was an obvious choice where they could start experimenting. Then the whole conversation made me think of you :)
    And I'll definitely be trying this soon.

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    Replies
    1. Yes! I guess we weren't in the deep South, but far enough that we had lots of grits and boiled peanuts. =)

      LOVE the book shop bakery idea...they could sell used books too!

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  10. Love Fantasy Fridays! And I'm defnetely trying this one; we don't have grits in Brasil hehehe.

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Thanks for making me smile. =)