To serve this pizza as a brunch casserole, just top the hot pizza with 8 poached or over-easy eggs and serve each guest an egg-topped slice. For a south-of-the-border turn, replace pizza sauce with salsa and use Monterey jack instead of mozzarella.
Makes one 9 × 13-inch pizza
- 7 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups corn grits
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
- 1 cup pizza sauce or thick pasta sauce
- 1 pound sliced mushrooms, sautéed
- 2 cups finely diced ham
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Bring water and salt to a rolling boil in a heavy pot. Slowly pour grits into the water, stirring constantly to keep grains from clumping. Boil for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring, until mixture thickens. Then reduce heat to medium-low and cook grits for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring constantly.
When grits are thick enough to hold a spoon standing upright in the pot, add butter and Cheddar cheese. Stir until well blended. Pour grits into a buttered oblong baking dish, smooth top, and let stand for 10 minutes.
Top grits with pizza or pasta sauce and cover with sautéed mushrooms, diced ham, and mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes, or until cheese is melted and lightly browned. Let stand several minutes before serving.
The Gritty on Grits
Southern breakfasts always include a side of grits, a coarse meal made from ground dried corn. For best flavor, buy yellow stone-ground corn grits, which are made from whole-kernel dried corn. White hominy grits come from dried corn soaked in an alkaline solution to remove the outer husk. Polenta and cornmeal are grits' cousins, made from dried corn that's been more finely ground.