By Karin Calloway

Karin Calloway is a working mom living in Augusta, Ga., with multiple freelance jobs and a ton of dirty dishes.

Great Grillin'

When the weather warms up it's time to fire up the grill, so this month we're sharing a menu of appetizers perfect for warm-weather entertaining.

Greet your guests with a delicious Creamy Black Bean Dip that's cool and spicy. Grilled Caponata can be prepared ahead of time and spread on hot-off-the-grill bruschetta once your guests arrive.

Two hearty appetizers are both savory and sweet. The first, Apple Butter Barbecued Shrimp, is plump jumbo shrimp marinated in apple butter, maple syrup and mustard. The shrimp are wrapped in bacon and grilled. The second, Grilled Sirloin and Peach Skewers, is a colorful and flavorful kebab with the surprising addition of peach in both the marinade and on the skewers. A crowd is sure to gather around the grill when they smell aroma of these two hearty appetizers.

A nice little pickup sweet is the perfect ending, and our Lemon-Pecan Tassies fill the bill. What could be better than a crispy pecan crust spread with tangy lemon curd?


Recipes:

Pancetta-Seared Green Beans
Green beans with bacon is as all-American as a side dish gets. Here, we swap out the bacon with smoky pancetta and add fresh herbs and garlic for an updated variation that’s also delicious with Brussels sprouts, broccoli or asparagus.
Apple Butter Barbecued Shrimp
Few appetizers are more crowd-pleasing than plump shrimp wrapped in bacon. Give the shrimp a coating of maple syrup, apple butter and Dijon mustard before wrapping in the bacon and you’ll take the ubiquitous combination to new heights.
Creamy Black Bean Dip
Every time you make this quick and easy dip it will disappear quickly. The recipe is prepared using pantry and refrigerator staples and it is always a hit at summer get togethers. Add some chopped jalapeno peppers if you like things hot and spicy!
Grilled Caponata Bruschetta
The combination of savory vegetables like eggplant and onion with tangy olives and capers, sweet golden raisins and crunchy pine nuts is what makes caponata so delicious. Increase the flavor by grilling the eggplant and onion and you’ve taken something good and made it great.
Grilled Sirloin and Peach Skewers
Kebabs are perfect party fare. They’re portable and require no utensils to be enjoyed by your guests. These Grilled Sirloin and Peach Skewers are a nice change from the usual teriyaki kebabs and they can be prepared on large or small skewers, depending on the type of party you’re hosting.