Luke Garvey’s Shrimp & Grits Benedict


 (Jekyll Island Authority)

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In 2008, Luke Garvey, who was just 12 years old, tied for 1st place in the amateur cooking  competition  at the annual Shrimp and Grits festival in Jekyll Island, Georgia. Bacon-wrapped shrimp, grit cakes, and Hollandaise sauce convey the true meaning of comfort food and it’s a dish that can be served any time of the day.


Grit cakes

  • 4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup grits
  • 4 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 pound sharp cheddar cheese
  • Cayenne pepper
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • A coating of flour
  • 2 Beaten eggs
  • Bread crumbs
  • Butter or olive oil for sautéing

Bacon wrapped shrimp:

  • 24 slice good-quality thick-cut bacon
  • 24 Medium to large Wild Georgia Shrimp, peeled and deveined

Hollandaise sauce:

  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of salt


Step 1:

  • Boil water and add salt. Slowly stir in grits and cook until thick. Remove from heat and add butter, cheese, cayenne and beaten egg. Set aside to cool slightly, then refrigerate.

Step 2:

  • When the mixture is cold, form into patties about 4-inches across and 1-inch thick. Place flour on a wide plate, eggs in another plate and crumbs in another plate. Dip patties first into flour, then into eggs, then cover with bread crumbs. Chill 30 minutes or overnight.

Step 3:

  • Heat butter or olive oil in a saucepan and sauté grit cakes until golden brown on both sides.

For the shrimp:

  • Wrap each shrimp with 1 slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Grill until the shrimp is fully cooked and the bacon is crispy, 2 to 3 minutes.

For the Hollandaise sauce- Step 1:

  • Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water or use a double boiler. The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Be careful not to let the eggs get too hot or they will scramble.

Step 2:

  • Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. Remove from heat, whisk in cayenne and salt. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use.

Step 3:

  • Spoon a generous serving of hollandaise in the bottom of shallow bowl. Place one grit cake on sauce and top with four shrimp. Serve hot.