Herb Brined Shrimp with Roasted Tomatoes and Polenta
Think of polenta as the more well-traveled cousin of the South’s grits.

In fact, this versatile dish is referred to by many as “Italian grits.” (Polenta is typically made from yellow corn while grits are more often made from white.) Polenta has its culinary roots in Northern Italy, but its popularity across Europe, the Americas, and Africa has made it a truly global dish. It can be savory. It can be sweet. Polenta is affordable, easy to make, and can be combined with just about anything.

Prep Time:

15 minutes + brine time

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Yields: 6 servings


Brine shrimp for 15 minutes according to package directions. Remove from brine and pat dry. While shrimp are brining prepare polenta. Bring water and stock to a boil over medium-high heat. Add salt and whisk in cornmeal pouring in a steady stream. Reduce heat to low and continue whisking until slightly thick, about 3 minutes. Cover and cook for 25 minutes, whisking every 10 minutes. Stir in goat cheese and butter, if desired.


Preheat oven to 400°F. Place tomatoes on a greased baking sheet, toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt. Roast in oven for 5 minutes; arrange shrimp on same baking sheet in an even layer. Return to oven and continue roasting until shrimp are pink, about 6 minutes. Drizzle shrimp and tomato mixture with vinegar, remaining oil, and basil; season with freshly ground black pepper.


To serve, divide polenta among 4 plates, top with shrimp mixture, and garnish with additional basil, if desired.


1 (16 ounce) pouch Garlic & Herb Chicken Brine
1 ¼ pounds shrimp, peeled, deveined, with tails left intact
1 pint grape tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
¼ cup fresh basil leaves, torn

2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup yellow cornmeal
2 ounces fresh goat cheese
1 tablespoon butter, optional