(2) Shrimp & Grits Casserole

Being the good southern girl that I am, I love shrimp & grits! I have even managed to win over my Pittsburgh native husband! This casserole took a little bit of work to put together. It wasn’t hard, but it did use a lot of dishes (which I hate! Oh well!). I was gonna be MAD if it wasn’t good, but I’m happy to report it was EXCELLENT!

We made dinner out of this and turned it into 6 servings instead of 12. I also used quick cooking grits (accidentally!) and they didn’t take but a few minutes to firm up. I don’t know why you’re supposed to use the yellow grits… the white quick ones were fine! I was also a little heavy handed with the cheese (maybe 1 cup or a little more?). Anyway, we served it with sauteed spinach (recipe is next!) and it was a hit!

Shrimp and Grits Casserole

Source: Cooking Light Magazine, December 2007
Yield: 12 servings (3/4 cup each)

CL Comments: This dish is best prepared just before serving. But you can save time by shredding the cheese and slicing the onions, bell pepper, and shrimp the night before.


4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup uncooked yellow stone-ground grits
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese, divided
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
1 pound peeled and deveined large shrimp, each cut into 3 pieces
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
3 large egg whites
Cooking spray


1) Bring chicken broth and salt to a boil in a large saucepan; add grits, stirring with a whisk. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes or until liquid is absorbed, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Add 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, stirring until cheese melts.

2) Preheat oven to 375°.

3) Heat oil and butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, bell pepper, garlic, and mushrooms to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Sprinkle shrimp with black pepper, and add to pan; cook 1 minute. Stir in rind, juice, Worcestershire, and hot pepper sauce; cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Place grits and shrimp mixture in a large bowl; stir gently. Beat egg whites with a mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold egg whites into shrimp mixture. Spoon mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until puffed and lightly browned. Let stand 20 minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 139 (27% from fat), Fat: 4.1g (sat 1.7g,mono 1.3g,poly 0.5g), Protein: 12.6g, Carbohydrate: 12.8g, Fiber: 0.5g, Cholesterol: 64mg, Iron: 1.6mg, Sodium: 372mg, Calcium: 77mg

Roaster Oven Ham

I had never seen a roaster oven before I married my husband. His mom and grandmother both have one and they are ancient. But they ROCK. They use them all the time and I have come to appreciate their usefulness! When you’re preparing a big meal (like Christmas dinner!) your ham or turkey or whatever can cook in the roaster oven and not hog up space in the oven. Very handy!

I also happen to live in Florida, so it’s nice to be able to not turn the oven on at all. On at least 1 occasion, I’ve put the roaster oven in the garage in order to keep the kitchen cool! (side note – today is 12/26/08 and it was 80 degrees out! ACK!)

Roaster Oven Ham

Source: Hamilton Beach Website
Yield: Depends on how big your ham is

This produces a flavorful and moist ham. I’ve made this more than once and always with success! (works just as well with a regular ham or spiral slice)

15 pound fully cooked smoked ham
2 cups water
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup brown sugar, packed

1. Remove rack. Pour 2 cups water into insert pan and preheat roaster oven to 325°F.

2. Trim thick part of fat off of ham down to 1/4-inch. Score remaining layer of fat into diamond design; this will help hold glaze.

3. Place ham on rack and place in roaster. Combine remaining ingredients to make glaze. Bake 1 hour.

4. Remove cover and spoon half of glaze over ham. Replace cover and bake 1 more hour.

5. Remove cover and spoon remaining glaze over ham. Replace cover, increase temperature to 400°F and bake for 10 minutes to set glaze. Internal temperature of ham should be at least 140°F.

Seared Beef Tenderloin with Dijon and Herbs

This recipe was classy, classic, and EASY!! The cooking time was just right on. The ends were medium-well and the middle was medium-rare. I used the best utensil in the kitchen to dress the beef – my hands! I smeared the mustard on and then did the old sprinkle/pat routine to get the herbs to stick. I was a little afraid that the flavor would be too strong, but it was just right! (and whatever you do, use fresh herbs!!)

PS: Don’t mind the weird shape of the beef! I think the butcher was drinking when he cut it! 🙂

Seared Beef Tenderloin
with Dijon and Herbs


An herb-mustard coating is a classic preparation for beef tenderloin. Add one teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon to the herb mixture, if desired. Serve with roasted potatoes and Brussels sprouts for an easy yet special dinner for guests.

Yield: 8 servings
Source: Cooking Light Magazine, November 2008

1 (2-pound) beef tenderloin, trimmed
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cooking spray
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

1. Preheat oven to 425°.

2. Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add beef to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until browned.

3. Combine mustard and garlic in a small bowl. Rub mustard mixture evenly over beef. Combine parsley, rosemary, and thyme in a small bowl. Sprinkle beef evenly with parsley mixture. Place beef on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 26 minutes or until a thermometer registers 135° or until desired degree of doneness. Place tenderloin on a platter; let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

Calories: 149 (32% from fat), Fat: 5.3g (sat 2g,mono 2.1g,poly 0.2g), Protein: 22.3g, Carbohydrate: 1.4g, Fiber: 0.1g, Cholesterol: 52mg, Iron: 1.5mg, Sodium: 404mg, Calcium: 19mg

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