Capital Chefs: Todd Gray of Equinox and Watershed (Part 2)

Shrimp and grits at Watershed
‘Shrimp and grits at Watershed’
courtesy of ‘bonappetitfoodie’

With winter approaching, I’m feeling more in the mood to spend time in the kitchen cooking up warm meals. Chef Todd Gray’s recipe for shrimp and grits is one of those that you can spend a little extra time preparing and will hit the spot when you’re cozy inside on a chilly winter’s day. You can find the dish on the menu at Watershed Restaurant or make it at home with the recipe after the jump.

Todd Gray at Watershed
‘Todd Gray at Watershed’
courtesy of ‘bonappetitfoodie’

Todd Gray’s Shrimp and Grits from Watershed
Serves 4

Shrimp combination:
24 16/20 (per pound) size Gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups barbeque sauce
1 cup Andouille sausage, cooked and roughly chopped
1/2 cup vegetable stock
2 tbsp. butter
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 tsp. Todd Grays’s house blended Skip Jack seasoning (Author’s note: Substitute Old Bay seasoning)
Salt and pepper (to taste)

3 cups coarse, stone ground grits
3 cups water
3 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
1 tbsp. butter
Salt and pepper (to taste)

1 bag baby spinach leaves, cleaned and washed
2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
1 tbsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper (to taste)

Shrimp and grits at Watershed
‘Shrimp and grits at Watershed’
courtesy of ‘bonappetitfoodie’

1. Combine milk and water and bring to a simmer. Whisk in grits, turn down heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes, adding liquid as necessary.
2. When grits are just cooked, stir in heavy cream and mascarpone cheese and season to taste.

1. Add spinach to 10” sauté pan and bring to medium heat.
2. Add olive oil, shallots and garlic.
3. Cook spinach until just wilted and season to taste. Drain and keep warm.

1. Combine shrimp, barbeque sauce, vegetable stock, butter and seasoning in an appropriately-sized pan and bring to medium heat.
2. Cook over medium heat until shrimp is just pink.
3. Add sausage and scallions and continuing cooking until warmed through.

To serve, spoon grits into center of the dish and place spinach on top. Then, spoon shrimp combination over grits and spinach. (Optional: drizzle additional barbeque sauce around dish). Enjoy!

Marissa was born and bred in New Jersey, but moved to DC for undergrad at GWU (Go Colonials, go!), fell in love with the District and learned that there was life and civilization beyond New York City. She loves eating at white-tablecloth-three-forks-at-your-place-setting restaurants, but she’ll also be the first to suggest we scarf down some chili dogs at 2 am. Simply put, she loves all things food. You can also read about why she loves DC. Follow her on Twitter and email her at mbialecki (at)

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