Cherry-Pistachio Tea Cakes

So of course whenever I do a Jane Austen mystery, I have to pair with something Regency, Jane Austen, or tea party related.

This recipe comes from a Food Network Magazine. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Pistachios
  • 1/3 Cup of Flour
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 2/3 Cup of Powdered Sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 6 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, Melted
  • 12-24 Medium Cherries with Stems

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
  3. Pulse the pistachios, flour, baking powder, and salt in a food processor or blender until finely grounded.
  4. Whisk the powdered sugar and eggs in a large bowl, then whisk in the pistachio mixture until just combined.
  5. Stir in the melted butter until just incorporated.
  6. Spoon 2 tablespoons of batter into each muffin cup.
  7. Bake until slightly puffed and just beginning to set, about 8 minutes.
  8. Place 1 or 2 cherries in the center of each cake and continue baking until the cakes feel springy and the edges are lightly browned, 10-12 minutes.
  9. Transfer to a rack and let cool 10 minutes in the pan, then remove from pan to cool completely.
  10. Dust with powdered sugar.

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Thoughts After Baking:

So instead of using fresh cherries I used frozen ones.

Yeah, they did not turn out right. The cake part was good, but the cherries kind of leaked in them.

As soon as cherries are back in season, I am going to remake them and update this post. I’m sure these will be fantastic.

For more Food Network Magazine recipes, go to Garden Pasta Salad with Bocconcini

For more tea party recipes, go to Harvest Pumpkin Scones

For more desserts, go to Strawberry Milkshake

For more dishes featuring cherries, go to Chocolate Covered Cherry Delights

For more cupcakes, go to King Arthur Carrot Cake or Cupcakes

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The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen

Often when people think of mysteries, they think of murder. Well a mystery is a person solving a crime or puzzle. This falls into the second category as two sisters, Ellen and Mimi Douglas, are given a diary that holds a secret code which leads to a priceless treasure. All they have to do is crack it.

As my sister blog JaneAustenRunsMyLife already has reviewed the book, I decided to borrow from her.

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The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen by Beth Pattillo

So when I saw that this was by Beth Pattillo, I was like…

Her again! Her again!

For those of you who don’t know, my review of Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart did not go well…

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I did not like that book at all. I thought it was absolutely horrible, a complete waste of my time. (If you want to read it, follow this link). So needless to say, I wasn’t exactly thrilled to be reading another one of her books.

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But did I hate this book? Keep reading to find out!

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*Contains Spoilers*

Ellen (Elinor) and Mimi (Marianne) Douglas (Dashwood) have never been close or gotten along with each other. Ellen is the no-nonsense, sensible, wears comfortable clothes sister:

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Mimi on the other hand is the dreamer, outgoing, friendly, doesn’t always think things through, and…

View original post 2,502 more words

A Loud Thud-Followed by the Unmistakeable Crash of an Enormous Ceramic Vase

Today is the second anniversary of my blog Mysterious Eats. We’ve been through a lot and reviewed all types of mystery books and recipes. I hope you’ve all enjoyed it as much as I have.

Read it from the beginning!

As this is my two year anniversary, the traditional gift is cotton while the new one is china. I thought about what to give myself and decided to go with a China vase.

But as these are mysteries the vase isn’t for looking but for using.

Happy Anniversary and a very special thanks to all my readers!

For more on anniversaries, go to This Business of the Clocks was Curious

For more on Lillian Jackson Braun and The Cat Who…Mystery Series, go to The Cat Who Could Read Backwards

Strawberry Milkshake

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I can’t find the recipe I used but I can give the essentials. If I ever find the website again I’ll be sure to give them the proper credit.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Pound of Fresh Strawberries, hulled and sliced (plus whole strawberries for garnish)
  • 2 Heaping Tablespoons of Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Pint of Vanilla Ice-Cream
  • 1/2 Cup of Milk
  • Whipped Cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Combine ingredients in blender.
  2. Add whole strawberry as a garnish and serve with whipped cream if desired.
  3. Drink & enjoy.

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Thoughts After Cooking:

I only have one word to say about this-delicious!

I will be making this again, for sure.

For more drink recipes, go to B is for Blueberry Smoothie

For more dessert, go to Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce

For more recipes, go to Spanakopita Penne Bake

The Chocolate Chip Mystery

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The Chocolate Chip Mystery by John McInnes

Thoughts Before Reading:

Well I thought I would try something new, and start reviewing Children’s books on Wednesday instead of putting them with the regular novels on Tuesdays.

Peppino visits the ice cream store, Max, every day after school. He works with the owner, Max, and also helps care for the dog that choose the ice cream parlor to be its home, Fat Dog.

One day Max becomes disheartened and when Peppino asks, it turns out that the building is going to be destroyed to be a office building. What will Max do?

The postman tells him of a ice-cream store that is for sale and the two go check it out. It turns out to be the Gravely store! Max doesn’t want that it is haunted!!!

He goes to see Mr. Gravely to ask about the store and Mr. Gravely is a tall, skeletal, man dressed as an undertaker! Creepy.

He tells him that his uncle used to run an ice-cream store, but it had to be given up as funny things kept happening. Hmmmmmmm?

They fix the store all up nice, but no one is coming. They think it might be because the story of it being haunted is turning people away.

Then to add to it, the ice-cream is disappearing, only Chocolate Chip though.

Peppino offers to stay and see what might be the cause of it. That night he sees a ghostly figure!

It turns out tat Max is sleep eating! That solves the mystery and problem, but what about the other one?

Peppino comes up with a fantastic idea, to market the parlor as a horror one.

Max’s Haunted Ice Cream Store

This Week’s Flavor:

GHOST AND GINGERSNAP

The store is all decorated as Max and Peppino dress up in costumes,. Soon all kinds of people come to visit and all ends well.

Yay!

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Thoughts After Reading:

Adorable. Such a cute book, I loved it!

For more Supernatural mysteries, go to The Winter People

For more ghosts, go to The Barter

For more reviews, go to Spring Breakdown

Spring Breakdown

So first of all, Happy First Day of Spring!

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Now on to the review:

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Spring Breakdown (Carter House Girls #7) by Melody Carlson

Thoughts Before Reading:

So this is a part of the series The Carter House Girls. Part Gossip Girl, part America’s Next Top Model, and all blended together with Christianity.

Each book is written like television episodes as every one gives more events of the group along with ending on just the right amount of cliffhanger so that you have a desire to read more and find out what happens next.

After D.J.’s mom died, she was sent to live with her grandmother, a famous ’60s fashion model Katherine Carter. Miss Carter decided to take this further and open her house up to five other girls and teach them about fashion, modeling, and more.

There is Taylor, daughter of singer Eva, beautiful, troubled, and very catty; Eliza, southern gal from Kentucky who wants to be the queen bee; Kriti, Indian, petite, and from New York; Cassie, D.J.’s old best friend from California who has been through a lot of changes and trouble; and Rhiannon, the only local, a nice girl, who’s mother is in rehab and the only Christian.

These girls have to work together, survive high school, model training, car accidents, disappearances, high school politics, boyfriend stealing, car accidents, parties, Las Vegas, New York City, an internet smear campaign, and more! Will the girls grow closer together? Or farther apart? Will they come to understand God’s love? Will they make good decisions?

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Plot Synopsis:

In this book the Carter House Girls have been in for some power plays between the now Christian Taylor and the ever in need of the limelight, Eliza. On Taylor’s side she has D.J.  and Rhiannon; Eliza on the other hand has Cassie while Kriti has returned to New York.

The trip started out as a nice fun time in Palm Beach, but became a fashion shoot, and even escalates when Harry (Eliza’s ex-boyfriend who is now interested in Taylor) decides to rent a condo nearby with his best guy friends.

Eliza keeps trying to win a competition only she sees, from pitting herself and Cassie against the others, trying to out glam them with tans that go horribly awry and more.

But things get really crazy when Eliza takes off on a date. When she doesn’t come back, they begin to grow worried.

They question Casey but she doesn’t know anything about this guy. That begins to worry the girls even more.

The talk to security, but they aren’t much help. They then call the FBI. All the girls can do is pray in the hopes that they find Eliza before it is too late.

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As the girls talk about who could have done this, they remember a lothario on the plane who seemed very interested in them and their plans.

But before they can tell the FBI about the mystery man, they get a ransom demand. Give him the money or the heiress dies.

Will their prayers be answered or will Eliza be lost forever?

Thoughts After Reading:

So this is the second to last book in the series and it takes a drastic turn from being about these girls to be a mystery and kidnapping, full of drama.

I thought that it was pretty good. One has to read the rest of the series to understand what is happening with the characters, but otherwise this was a fun story that had a twist I wasn’t originally expecting.

For more Young Adult novels, go to Fangs But No Fangs

For more Christian books, go to Paper Roses

For more book reviews, go to Death Threads

Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

Thoughts Before Baking:

So I had thought I was making a pie for Saint Patrick’s Day as I posted Tuesday, but I realized that I had it wrong, I had a cake recipe, not a pie.

Oh well. Here we go. I got this recipe from The Kitchen McCabe.

Ingredients:

Cake:

  • 3 Cups of Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons of Baking Powder
  • 1/8 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Ground Cloves
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Ground Nutmeg
  • 12 Tablespoons of Butter
  • 3/4 Cup of Sugar
  • 4 Large Granny Smith Apples
  • 2 Eggs
  • 3/4 Cup of Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons of Sugar (For sprinkling on top of the cake.)

Custard:

  • 6 Large Egg Yolks
  • 6 Tablespoons of Sugar
  • 1.5 Cups of Whole Milk
  • 1.5 Teaspoons of Vanilla

Directions:

Cake:

  1. Grease and flour an 8″ or 9″ springform pan. If you do not have a springform pan then cover a pan with foil and grease it.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, cloves, and nutmeg into a large mixing bowl. (Make sure the bowl is very large as everything will later be combined into it.)
  4. Cut the butter into the flour using your fingers or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles fine crumbs.
  5. Add the 3/4 cup of sugar to the flour mixture and mix in.
  6. Peel the apples and slice them into uniform pieces (about 1/4″ wide and then cut into three pieces.)
  7. Toss the apples into the flour mixture and combine thoroughly.
  8. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and milk together. Add this to the flour mixture and mix. The batter should be thick and dough-like.
  9. Transfer the dough to the pan and fatten the top with the back of a spatula.
  10. Sprinkle sugar over the top of the cake.
  11. Bake for 45-50 mins. Test the center for doneness. The top of the cake should be a golden brown.
  12. Serve slices with the custard sauce.

Custard Sauce:

  1. Place the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk until pale yellow, 2-3 mins.
  2. Place the milk in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
  3. Slowly whisk the hot milk into the egg/sugar mixture.
  4. Transfer the mixture back into the saucepan and stir over a medium heat until the custard thickens, about 4 minutes. Custard should be thick enough to coat the back of the spoon.
  5. Mix in the vanilla and then transfer to a bowl or serving saucer.
  6. Serve warm or cold over the apple cake.

 

Thoughts After Baking:

So I tried making the custard, but the eggs cooked too fast and this is what they ended up being:

So I instead went with the glaze from A is for Applesauce Cake.

Otherwise, the cake was good. It wasn’t really sweet, but I enjoyed it. Good with tea or coffee.

For more Saint Patrick’s Day recipes, go to Irish Soda Bread

For more cake, go to Pumpkin Spice Cake

For more desserts, go to Rice Krispies Cookies

For more holiday recipes, go to Chicken Cashew Wrap

For more pinterest recipes, go to Blueberry Sour Cream Pie

Death Threads

So I know today is Pi/Pie day

I was going to make one and post it and switch with Friday’s post, but Friday is Saint Patrick’s day and I wanted to post a Saint Patrick’s day recipe. I went back and forth on this…

Then I finally decided, book review today and recipe Friday, a pie recipe to tie in with this day & Saint Patrick’s Day. So here we go with our book review:

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Death Threads (Southern Sewing Circle #2) by Elizabeth Lynn Casey

So I read this book and was planning on reviewing it, but then I couldn’t remember what happened other than I didn’t like it.

So I had to reread it in order to review it. Let’s see if my views changed.

So after a disastrous discovery of her fiancé cheating on her, Tori decides to move to Sweet Briar, South Carolina. There she found herself the victim of horrible pranks, a ton of residents upset with her replacing their favorite librarian, and a suspect in a murder.

But that’s all in the past. Now Tori is doing well at the library, has been accepted as a member of the town, dating a handsome teacher, and working hard on her sewing-grateful for her new friends and community.

But then things take a dark turn…Colby Calhoun: handsome, local author, newspaper reporter, and husband of Tori’s friend and sewing circle member–reveals that the town has been perpetuating a lie. The story is that the town was burned by Yankees in the Civil War, the Sweet Briar people coming together and rebuilding on the ashes, but Colby reveals that the town was really burned when a moonshine distillery caught fire.

Obviously Colby has never seen the film The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance or else he would know:

Ransom Stoddard: You’re not going to use the story, Mr. Scott?

Maxwell Scott: No, sir. This is the West, sir. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.

The town becomes furious at Colby, all talking about how they would like to hurt him. His wife and kids are bullied or treated as pariahs. Even in the sewing circle Debbie isn’t accepted.

Tori is the only one who sticks up for her. Later when she checks on Debbie, the two discover the house ransacked, a threatening note, blood in the area, and a missing Colby.

Tori sets out to discover what happened to her friend’s husband and tries to catch whoever is doing this, because:

Also in this book, Tori meets an eccentric older woman who made up a boyfriend the past five years. But now it looks as if the man is real as they are getting married. Who could he be?

Thoughts after Reading:

Let’s see how did I feel?

The first one was much better. This one was boring.

It took a looooong time to get the characters moving.

And the mystery was easily solved. As soon as they brought the characters in it was clear what was up.

For more Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries, go to Sew Deadly

For more Southern Mysteries, go to Cookie Dough or Die

For more mysteries, go to The Itsy Bitsy Spider

Spanakopita Penne Bake

I found this recipe in an old Good Housekeeping magazine. I’ve never had spanakopita but have heard it is good and wanted to try out this variant.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 lb Penne
  • 2 10-oz Boxes of Frozen Chopped Spinach
  • 1 Cup of Crumbled Feta Cheese
  • 1/4 Cup of Loosely Packed Dill, Chopped
  • 15-oz Part-Skim Ricotta or Cottage Cheese
  • 1/2 Tsp. of Salt
  • 8-oz Part Skim Mozzarella Cheese, Shredded

Directions:

  1. Cook penne for half the time said on the box; adding the spinach.
  2. When draining, reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta/spinach water.
  3. Combine feta, dill, cottage cheese, & salt in a bowl.
  4. Add penne, spinach, and the 1/2 cup of water.
  5. Spread evenly in a 3 quart baking dish. Top with the Mozzarella Cheese.
  6. Cover with foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 25 mins.
  7. Uncover and bake for 10 mins.
  8. Serve.

Thoughts after cooking:

I thought it was absolutely delicious.

I couldn’t stop eating it.

For more casseroles, go to Too Easy Hotdish

For more recipes from Good Housekeeping, go to Two-Cheese Roasted-Veggie Pasta

For more recipes, go to Herbed Eggs with Sour Cream

The Itsy Bitsy Spider

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The Itsy Bitsy Spider (An Emma Frost Mystery #1) by Willow Rose

So I was first introduced to Willow Rose when I was checking out the site BookBub, and saw the book Miss Polly Had a Dolly (An Emma Frost Mystery #2) was on sale for free.

FREE!

It sounded good, although I have to admit when I read Emma Frost the first thing that popped in my head was the X-Men character. Even though this is not how Emma is described I am unable to get this image out of my head when reading.

So Willow Rose is a Danish writer, and not to rude or mean or anything (I’m part Danish myself), but I’ve noticed that Scandinavian writers tend to go real, real, dark in their writing. Something that won’t be for everyone.

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Synopsis:

The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the water spout
Down came the rain and washed the spider out
Out came the sun and dried up all the rain
And the itsy bitsy spider climbed up the spout again

So the book begins with a flashback. A women, Astrid, is stuck in a bunker. She’s not mentally all there, emotionally abused by her mother, and all around disliked by everyone and herself. This makes her the perfect mark with a guy who pushes for more than just hanging out. Astrid is sixteen and has fallen for Christian, but is now pregnant and trapped underground.

Flash-forward to present day. So Emma Frost is a journalist, divorced, and mother of two. Her grandmother (father’s mother), who she has only met once has just died and left Emma her house on Fanø Island. Emma decides the change of pace will be good for them and three move, at the great displeasure of Emma’s father.

It is a cute little island that depends on tourism. A sweet and nice place to live. Emma picks up the keys to the house from the police officer Dan Toft and remarks how nice it will be to leave in a small-town place.

“You must not have much crime here on the island. Must be kind of nice, right?.”

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Famous last words

You notice that always happens. It is a nice quiet community; someone moves there or moves back and the next thing you know bodies are dropping and they are investigating.

Her daughter Maya feels the same as her grandfather, but Victor is pleased. Victor is Emma’s youngest and suffers from the doctors don’t quite know what. Some say aspergers, some autism, some say he just needs attention; all she knows is that he has some mental issues and she needs to do all she can to try to keep him on a schedule. He doesn’t like touching, not being in his room, likes trees, etc.

Meanwhile, a woman down the way has just been murdered. Attracted by the sirens, Emma tries to look into it, not receiving much; turns to a trick taught by an old boyfriend; hacking.

When she looks into the police reports, she discovers that the woman just wasn’t murdered; her heart and liver were also cut out. We are dealing with a cannibal.

Back in 1977, Astrid is pregnant but living okay in the bunker. Every so many months she runs out of the supplies and her captor delivers more. She also gives her magazines and information on being pregnant. Astrid goes through the whole 9 months and deliverers on her own. She gives birth to a boy she names Sebastian.

I have a baby!

Back in the present, Emma meets some neighbors, Sophia and Jack. She gets the lowdown on the island and discovers there is a church that controls the society on the island; once you are in you never can leave. Only a few manage to get out.

I’m scared.

Irene Justesen is the Danish Jane Fonda, known as the Queen of Fitness throughout the country. She is thought of as a success story as she started out poor but built a powerful company. However, she has lost most to her drinking; and can’t enjoy the wealth and success as she traded it for her daughter.

One night after she has been leading an exercise class, the killer comes for her. She tries to bribe the killer, but nothing works. He kills her, harvests her organs, and shoves a sweatband into her mouth after her death.

Victor is crying out in his sleep about spiders. Emma tries to calm him down, but all he will say is :

“Spider,’ he said. ‘Watch for the spider!”

Now I read up to book six in this series, before I started this blog and circled back to review. One thing I’ve noticed that they haven’t explained is that whatever Victor’s condition is, it gives him some type of ESP. He is able to give warnings and everything he says helps Emma and the police in solving this crimes.

Victor wants to sleep in Emma’s room; something strange and unlike him. When Emma asks him why, he tells her someone died in his room.

WHAT!

Meanwhile, Emma and Sophia have grown to be very good friends. They visit every week and it turns out that Sophia has a new boyfriend and is pregnant with her sixth child (all have different fathers.)

Emma continues to do research and discovers that the people who were all killed belonged to the same church.

Then something odd happens, Victor becomes really sick as it turns out he has been attacked by spiders when he was out in the backyard.

Back in the ’70s, Astrid is celebrating Sebastian’s birthday. Astrid has been careful, but it appears she went either ate too much, calculated wrong, or that the captor forgot to bring them food. They are running out, and even with Astrid giving up her meals and giving them to Sebastian there will soon be nothing. Something needs to happen or else they will be dead.

As Astrid grows weaker and weirded out by her son’s fascination with spiders, she makes Sebastian promise that if the bunker was opened at anytime; for him to run and escape.

Pastor Gotredsen, the minster of the church that controls the island, is very unhappy with the news of Irene’s death. Not because he liked her, but because he knows what this means. They are killing all involved and the minister is next. However, his ego chooses to ignore this and continues believing that he is going to only come out on top.

We also discover that this minister does not truly believe in what he is supposed to be preaching, as he is practicing every sin he is supposed to be against, and the leader of a human trafficking group.

The killer of course comes for the minister, adding one more to his nightly meals.

Emma does some more hacking and discovers that once again the organs were removed and a number two was marked on a wall. They all had numbers on the wall. Counting down to what? Or who?

Emma goes into Victor’s room and removes everything from the walls. As she looks closer at sites of the repainting, she can see that there was a five painted there. Her grandma was killed by this psychopath.

Back in the ’80s, Astrid continues to grow weaker, wondering when the food is coming. Up above she hears the sound of a siren…

Back in the present Emma’s dad is coming to visit. He has been lonely without his family, as after his wife took off for Spain with her lover, all he had was Emma and the kids.

Flashback to the ’80s, and Astrid dies from starvation. Sebastian is the only one left and has only one option left to survive. His mom.

In the present, Emma goes to dinner with Sophia and her chef boyfriend. They are having a great night until they discover what the meal is. Organs. Very fancy-schmancy; but could they possibly be the minister’s organs?

Back in the ’80s, Sebastian  has been alone and scared; his only comfort his pet spiders. One day he hears a sound from the doorway, creak. It opens up and in walks a beautiful blonde girl. She says hello and asks him to play. Sebastian refuses, remembering his mother’s words and taking off in a run. Meanwhile the little girl’s father calls to her, “Emma, where are you?”

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Thoughts After Reading

I thought this was a pretty good mystery. It was suspenseful, kept you guessing and had an intense resolution.

***Spoilers***

So a couple of things, how did Officer Dan pass his psych evaluation? He’s totally a psychopath.

Emma does one stupid thing over and over; she just goes off without telling anyone where she is going.

And how creepy that ending. Your half-brother was trying to rape his nephew, kill his sister, and kill his father. I would be utterly creeped out to see that I has an insane brother like that.

I felt so bad for the father. Impregnated a much younger girl knowing you took advantage of her age ad mental state; but then trying to do the right thing but it turns out your mom and her cronies locked her up in a bunker and lied saying she left. And then your sons tries to rape your grandson, kill his sister, and murder you! He’s gonna need a lot of therapy. That whole family will.

For more mysteries with investigative reporters, go to The Alchemy of Murder

For more mysteries with psychics, go to The Final Seven

For more BookBub books, go to The Saint Valentine’s Day Cookie Massacre

For more mysteries, go to Apple Turnover Murder

Too Easy Hotdish

 

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Thoughts Prior to Cooking:

This recipe comes from the Hannah Swenson Mystery Apple Turnover Murder.

Hannah makes this dish for her boyfriend and sheriff deputy, Mike. Now before reading this book I had never heard of a hotdish, other than a hot dish, as in a dish that is hot. Apparently they are big in the Midwest and Northwest, but me being from California we don’t eat “hotdishes”, we eat casseroles. But I was willing to give it a try as to how they described it in the book made it sound extremely tasty.

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Ingredients:

  • Non-stick Cooking Spray or Butter
  • 1 and 1/2 lbs of Lean Ground Meat (such as hamburger, pork, chicken, turkey, sausage, etc. Make sure it is lean as the fat does not drain out of this dish)
  • 2 -12oz Cans of Cream of anything
  • 1 lb Package of Tater Tots
  • 1 Cup of Shredded Cheese (Be sure to use only one cup as too much can become an insulator and keep the bottom layers from cooking.)
  • Worcestershire Sauce (Optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400° fahrenheit.
  2. Use the cooking spray or butter to coat a 9 by 13-inch pan.
  3. Put the ground meat in the bottom of the pan, spreading it as evenly as you can. Press it down with your hands or the back of a spatula.
  4. Spoon the two cans of cream-of-something on top of the meat. Make sure to spread it out as evenly as possible.
  5. Put the tater tots on top of the soup in a single layer. Spread them out as evenly as possible.
  6. Sprinkle on the shredded cheese.
  7. Do not cover your hotdish with anything. Slip the pan into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the tater tots are browned and crispy.

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Thoughts After Cooking:

In a way this particular hotdish is like the poor man’s Shepherd’s pie. Instead of mashed potatoes, tater tots, and instead of gravy, cream of something. I am not a fan of Shepherd pie at all, I can hardly eat it, but I did enjoy this Hotdish.

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The only thing that I thought was wrong with this dish was that it was rather plain in seasoning. I recommend using the Cream of Chicken and Herb, as the herbs really helped along with adding a bit of Worcestershire sauce.

It was very easy to prepare and I recommend it for those of you who’s hours are crunched (working moms and college students) and need a fast dish to make and make quickly.

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I didn’t include a picture as it doesn’t photograph well, but do not let it’s looks deter you. It does taste great.

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For more Hannah Swenson recipes, go to Christmas Cheese Rounds

For more cassaroles, go to Ratatouille