This month, we’re asking food bloggers what they eat for breakfast, and their answers have been mouthwatering. Today, Anna from The Yellow Table reveals how to make grits with an Italian twist. Here’s how to whip it up…


Parmesan Grits with Roasted Tomatoes and Basil
By Anna Watson Carl of The Yellow Table

I grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, where grits were a staple on our breakfast table. We usually had the white instant variety, served with lots of butter. As I grew older, though, I fell in love with old-fashioned stoneground grits, and I realized they were essentially the same thing as polenta (which I also love). Recently, while visiting my parents, I made these yellow stoneground grits with butter and Parmesan. The combo was delicious, especially when topped with sweet, roasted tomatoes and basil—a nod to my southern upbringing, with a touch of Italy.

The best thing about this dish is that it looks way more difficult than it is: it takes only 45 minutes from start to finish, and only about five minutes of that is prep. The grits simmer, the tomatoes roast, and you just throw everything together before serving. It’s the perfect simple, elegant dish for a brunch with friends. I like serving it in individual bowls, but if you’re cooking for a crowd, double the recipe and serve it in a big dish with the tomatoes and basil scattered on top. I’d serve this with warm buttermilk biscuits and country ham, sliced fruit and an arugula citrus salad.

Recipe: Parmesan Grits with Roasted Tomatoes and Basil
Serves 4

You’ll need:
4 cups water
1 tsp. sea salt
1 cup stoneground yellow grits (not quick-cooking)
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbsp. finely chopped basil

What to do:
Preheat oven to 425F.

Bring the water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Once the mixture is boiling, slowly add the grits in a steady stream, stirring (or whisking) constantly. Stir for 2 minutes then reduce heat. Simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring frequently, until the grits are thick and creamy.

While the grits are simmering, arrange the tomatoes on a baking sheet and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast until tomatoes are softened and beginning to blister, about 20-25 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Once the grits are done, remove from heat and stir in the butter and Parmesan. Taste and add a little more salt if you need to. Divide the grits into 4 small bowls and top each with roasted tomatoes and a pinch of basil.

NOTE: This dish is best eaten right away, but you can also make it a day ahead. To reheat, place the chilled grits in a medium saucepan and add ¼ cup of boiling water. Place over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until creamy. (Add a few more tablespoons of hot water if need be.) Reheat the tomatoes in the microwave or in a 350F oven.

Thank you so much, Anna!

P.S. More best recipes, including three-ingredient salsa and a grown-up grilled cheese.

(Recipe by Anna Watson Carl of The Yellow Table. Photos by Signe Birck. Thanks to Shoko for helping with this series.)