Matt Fridy is at home in the kitchen

Published 4:18 pm Monday, December 10, 2012

By CATHERINE LEGG / Community Columnist

Years ago, most men avoided the kitchen like the plague, so I find it fascinating that many of today’s macho men are very comfortable there and really love to cook.

Matt Fridy dices green peppers for his favorite shrimp and grits. (Contributed)

My quick search for one led me to Matt Fridy, who along with his wife Kimberly and their three children, lives in Montevallo. Matt works weekdays as an attorney. Weekends he enjoys cooking for family and friends.

When asked about his favorite dishes, Matt said, “Over the last couple of years, Kimberly and I have begun exploring other ethnic cuisines, particularly Thai and Greek. Finding the ingredients can be a little challenging, but the dishes are surprisingly simple and flavorful. The two most important things to cooking are quality ingredients and the realization that if you follow the recipe, the dish will usually turn out like it’s supposed to.”

Matt often gets requests for either his Thai coconut soup or shrimp and grits. He was kind enough to share this recipe, explaining that it’s a Paula Deen recipe he altered to give more flavor and kick.


New Orleans-Style Shrimp and Grits


4 servings grits

8 oz. extra sharp white cheddar cheese, grated

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1/2 pound andouille sausage, diced finely

¼ cup leeks, diced finely (approx. 1/4 leek)

¼ cup onion, diced finely (approx. 1/2 medium onion)

¼ cup green pepper, diced finely (approx. 1/2 pepper)

2 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

2 Tbsp. white wine

2 cups heavy cream

Salt and black pepper to taste



Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and sauté until crisp. Add diced vegetables and sauté until onions are translucent. Add shrimp and sauté until shrimp are pink. Deglaze pan with white wine. Slowly add the cream and let reduce until thickened. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

While making sauce, cook grits and then stir in cheese until melted. Keep warm until sauce is thickened and reduced to approximately a quarter of original volume. Stir in grits to completed sauce. Serves 4-6.


Thanks to Matt for this wonderful idea for the holidays!


Catherine Legg can be reached by email at