Dear Readers: The holiday season usually means additional dishes. Why not "stir" things up a bit and serve something a little different, such as Shrimp Dijon? It can be either an appetizer or main dish when served over rice or noodles. To make this scrumptious shrimp recipe, you'll need:

1/4 cup butter or margarine

1 1/2 pounds peeled, deveined shrimp

1 medium onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup flour

1 1/2 cups milk

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 6-ounce package cream cheese, softened

Melt butter or margarine in a frying pan; add the shrimp and onion, and saute for about 3 minutes. Do not brown. Sprinkle a little flour at a time into the mixture. Add a little milk slowly, continuously stirring to avoid lumps. Add mustard, nutmeg, salt and pepper, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the cream cheese (cut into thin slices) until it is completely blended, then warm through, but DO NOT BOIL.

You can find this recipe and several other special favorites, like Spicy Swedish Meatballs, Peking Roast and Salmonettes, in my Main Dishes and More pamphlet, which you can have by sending $3 and a long, self-addressed, stamped (58 cents) envelope to: Heloise Main Dishes, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001.

Since shrimp can be a little pricey, buy an extra pound or two when it goes on sale and freeze it. Shrimp Dijon may become a family and friend favorite.— Heloise

P.S.: Add a few drops of yellow food coloring to the water for the rice or noodles to make the dish eye-appealing.

Dear Abby: Thanks for your daily hints — some make me laugh, and they always make me think.

My idea today came to me after I once again had to search for a favorite recipe pasted in one of the three loose-leaf binders where I have kept recipes for 50 years. I went through all the binders, cut out the favorites, left the "maybes" in the binder and threw away the ones that I have passed over hundreds of times. Then I scanned all my favorites, putting several on a page. I started a new indexed binder labeled "favorites." I have saved a lot of time for myself, and I have saved all those precious handwritten recipes that were deteriorating from age. And now, all I have to do is keep up with new recipes. — Winnie O'Shaughnessy, Mirror Lake, N.H.

Dear Readers: Here's a hint when you are trying a new recipe: Always read through the ingredients and instructions at least twice so you know exactly what items you need and how to make it. It will save a mistake or a missing ingredient. — Heloise

Dear Heloise: To keep plastic wrap from sticking to my frosted cakes, I use corn-on-the-cob holders to keep the plastic from touching the frosting. — Marilyn Missen, Dunlap, Ill.

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