Grits are a staple of Southern fare and can be enjoyed with any meal from breakfast to supper! Paring it with another Southern staple, pimento cheese just takes it to another level. We know you will certainly enjoy it!
Pimiento Cheese Baked Grits
This is a great make-ahead dish. Prepare through step 2; cover and chill overnight. Let grits stand at room temperature while preheating your oven.
Bring 4 cups of water and 1 teaspoon salt to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Slowly whisk in grits. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often, 30 minutes or until grits are thickened and tender. Remove from heat.
Add half and half, cayenne, cheese, pimientos, and green onion to grits, stirring until cheese melts. Stir in eggs. Pour grits into a lightly greased 2-quart baking dish.
Preheat oven to 350F. Bake 50-55 minutes or until golden brown and edges are set. Let cool 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with additional chopped green onion, if desired.
As summer winds down, weekends become even more important for gatherings for family and friends. A weekend spent fishing can reel in more than just a good catch. Around here, we have lots of favorite fishing spots, but you don’t have to catch it to enjoy it. As a matter of fact, the conversations in the kitchen and around the table make it all taste better anyway. We love a good fish fry and we like to experiment with flavors, so we’ve taken inspiration from our Corn Fritters and added corn to the hushpuppies. It’s a great savory treat with just a hint of sweetness from the corn.
1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno or bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion, if desired
Vegetable oil for frying
Place the hushpuppy mix, egg, and buttermilk in a mixing bowl. Stir with a fork just to combine. Fold in the corn, pepper, and onion, if desired. Set aside.
Place enough oil in a large, heavy skillet or pot to measure 2 inches deep. Heat over medium-high until the oil is hot, 365 degrees on a thermometer. Scoop or spoon generous tablespoons into the hot oil. Cook, turning once, until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Labor Day picnics and family reunions beg something wonderful to bring. If you want to wow everyone, make a watermelon salad. And it’s just so easy! The following adaptable, changeable recipe is based on three of our favorite summer flavors – watermelon, peaches, and ripe tomatoes. Combined in this salad, they speak end of summer and celebration. You salt the watermelon and tomatoes first. Just before serving, add the peaches, and pile the fruit on top of your favorite lettuce, and sprinkle with oil, vinegar, and fresh herbs. Garnish with feta and almonds. You can serve on individual plates, or pile onto a large platter to feed 8. If you don’t have the basil or mint, use dill or parsley. And if you don’t have feta, use cubes of fresh mozzarella. In a hurry? Drizzle with one of our Old Mill favorite salad dressings.
6 cups seedless watermelon chunks, cut into 1-inch chunks
4 cups good, ripe heirloom tomatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
½ to 1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups sliced, peeled ripe peaches
6 cups fresh arugula or your favorite salad greens
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1½ tablespoons white or red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint or basil, or a combination
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons toasted sliced almonds
Place the watermelon and tomatoes in a mixing bowl and season with salt. Toss to coat, and let the fruit sit for 30 minutes. Drain well.
Fold the peaches into the watermelon and tomato mixture. To serve, spoon the fruit on top of the salad greens. Drizzle with oil and vinegar. Garnish the top with chopped fresh herbs, feta cheese, and toasted almonds.
Here at The Old Mill, our products are milled the old-fashioned way. We grind corn into cornmeal or grits using French Buhr Flint Granite stones, just like this mill has done since 1830. The power comes from the sheer force of the Little Pigeon River being diverted by the dam so the water moves through a turbine, which turns the shafts, wheels, and belt connected to the stones. We then have what is called a “grits machine,” which sifts the grits, removing the hull so you get the heart of the kernel of corn. It is electric-powered today, but originally it was fueled by the power of our big water wheel turning. The iconic water wheel still operates grain elevators, which carry the corn to the stones. We think it’s important to stay true to the way corn has always been ground to feed the residents of the Smoky Mountains. Stone-grinding produces meal and grits with more flavor. In our grits, you can taste the corn! And their stone-ground texture works in all kinds of great recipes, from shrimp and grits to a simple bowl of grits with butter for breakfast.
Grits have been milled in the South ever since the native Americans introduced the settlers to the process. They are the backbone of many great mountain recipes, but you need to see for yourself. Come visit us and have our freshly milled yellow grits for breakfast and take home a bag of the yellow or white grits. If you can’t visit the Smokies, you can always order our grits online. September 2nd is National Grits for Breakfast Day, so plan now and you can celebrate with us!