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April 2001


April showers bring May flowers...and the taxman! But don't despair. If
you didn't get a whopping refund this year, you can still entertain and eat
for under $25! The following menu will feed four, and the cost is
approximately $17! Bon apetit!


BBQ Shrimp with Creamy Corn Sauce
Cheese Grits Soufflés
Spinach, Apple and Pecan salad

24 large shrimp (1 pound), peeled, deveined and will tail shells intact
1/3 cup spicy barbecue sauce
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped

Creamy Corn Sauce
1 cup corn kernels
2/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup each, diced onion and red bell pepper
1 plum tomato, seeded and diced
fresh thyme for garnish (optional)

Place the shrimp, bbq sauce and thyme into a bowl. Mix and let marinate while you are making the corn sauce. In a small saucepan, bring all the sauce ingredients EXCEPT the tomato to a boil; cover and simmer 8 minutes. Uncover and boil 2 minutes; until thickened slightly. Remove from the heat and add the tomato. Keep covered. Preheat your stovetop grill, broiler or outdoor grill. Line the shrimp on on a cutting board in 4 rows of 6 shrimp each. Use two skewers about 2 inches apart in each row or shrimp (to prevent shrimp from curling up). Grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, until barely opaque in the center. Remove the skewers before arranging the shrimp on each diner's plate. Serve with the corn sauce and garnish with fresh thyme, if desired.

Cheese Grits Soufflés
2 teaspoons unsalted butter, softened
2 Tablespoons plain dry bread crumbs
1 cup each reduced fat milk (2%) and water
1/3 cup old fashioned grits
1 teaspoon each Worcestershire and salt
1 teaspoon hot red pepper sauce, or to taste
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 large eggs, separated

Butter 4 soufflé dishes (1 cup size) and coat them with the bread crumbs. Chill. In a saucepan, bring milk and the water to a boil. Slowly whisk in grits. Reduce heat to low an cover. Cook 20 minutes, whisking every 5 minutes, until thickened. Remove from heat. Preheat over to 375ºF. Scrape grits into bowl and whisk in Worcestershire, salt, and hot pepper sauce. Whisk in the cheese, then the egg yolks. Let cool for 3 minutes. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold in the grits and spoon into the prepared soufflé dishes. Bake for 26 minutes, until risen and golden brown. let cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then invert onto the serving plates with the shrimp.

Spinach, Apple and Pecan Salad
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon each mustard and sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 Golden Delicious apple, halved, cored and thinly sliced
1/4 cup thin red onion strips
3/4 pound fresh spinach, washed, tough stems trimmed and leaves torn
1/3 cup toasted pecans

In a large bowl, whisk oil, vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt and pepper until thick. Add apple and onion. Place spinach on top, then pecans. Toss just before serving.

Visit The whole kit'n kaboodle for more great recipes!