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Cardwell's Shrimp, Missouri Country Ham & Heirloom Grits with Cheddar

8 servings
Bill Cardwell
Pairs well with:
Chardonnay, Napa Valley

Chef Bill Cardwell of Cardwell's in St. Louis, MO shows us how to prepare Shrimp, Missouri Country Ham & Heirloom Grits with Cheddar to pair with Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay.


2 lbs. of 21/25 count shrimp in shell; peeled and deveined; reserve shells, refrigerate for later use.

2 T. olive oil
1 large onion, minced
2 stalks celery, minced
4 large cloves garlic, minced
4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 sprigs fresh tarragon
2 T. tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 c. white wine
2 qts. water
1 tsp. old bay seasoning
6 T. soft sweet butter
3 T. flour

8 oz. Missouri Country Ham- fine dice
2 T. olive oil
reserved shrimp from above
salt and pepper
hot sauce

1 1/2 c. Heirloom Grits
6 c. cold water
1 T. sea salt
white pepper
1 c. aged white cheddar cheese, shredded
4 T. sweet butter

1 c. green onions, thinly sliced


Heat olive oil in heavy 4 quart sauce pot, add reserved shells and cook stirring until they turn pink, add onion, celery, garlic, herbs and seasoning and sauté together for 2-3 minutes.

Add wine and water, bring to boil and simmer for one hour, strain shells and solids, reserve stock and discard solids.

Place stock in sauce pot and reduce to approximately four cups, taste for salt and pepper. Combine butter and flour and knead into paste, slowly whip into reduced stock a little at a time to thicken, bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes, strain and reserve warm.

Heat olive oil in large sauté pan, add ham and cook stirring until brown and crispy, remove with slotted spoon and reserve. Add shrimp and more oil (if needed) in a single layer and cook until pink on both sides. Remove as cooked and reserve with ham. When all shrimp are cooked, combine ham and shrimp with warm reserved sauce, taste for seasoning, and add hot sauce if desired.

In 4 quart sauce pot with lid bring water and salt to boil, slowly add grits, stirring until grits begin to thicken; cover. Turn heat on low and simmer stirring occasionally until grits are tender and thick, add cheese and butter, taste and season with salt and pepper.

To serve place portion of grits in bowl, ladle on top shrimp and ham with sauce, sprinkle with green onion.

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