Chef, restaurateur and author Marcus Samuelsson is joining the TODAY Food team to share two of his favorite recipes featuring creamy, comforting grits. He shows us how to make classic shrimp and grits with a zesty gumbo sauce and grits with bits of spiced beef tenderloin and fragrant aromatics.
Ed was the executive chef at the Rooster. He's my man. He's a major part of what we do. He's put Rooster on fire. His mix tape dinners are legendary: He creates dinners based on rap and R&B music, with Nas, Biggie, Missy Elliott and Wu Tang in mind. It's so beautiful; diners are invited to eat a soulful story on a plate. And of course, when Raekwon the Chef, of the Wu Tang Clan, came and performed, he and Ed tore it up.
When I think about a Southern dish like shrimp and grits, I'm reminded of the mood that jazz and church give me, and of how universal these feelings are. These dishes are eaten all over the world, just like hip-hop is heard all over the world. Ed's parents grew up in the South, so he can teach us about shrimp and grits, about gumbo. Food like this points to a culture, to art, to music. I didn't grow up in America, so when I listen to Ed, I'm learning not only from a chef's point of view. I'll say, "Ed, what do you remember about eating at home?" Then I sit back, taste and listen.
We serve this dish at our Hav & Mar restaurant, and we use inspiration from a traditional Ethiopian recipe using tibs, or beef tips, that is typically stir-fried and spiced with berbere, an Ethiopian spice blend. I love the warm, homemade memories this meal conjures with its flavors and the kick of spice that brings it all together. It is the perfect dish to share family-style with those you love.
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