A CONSIGNMENT SHOP MYSTERY series.
Duffy Brown loves anything with a mystery. While others girls dreamed of dating Brad Pitt, Duffy longed to take Sherlock Holmes to the prom. She has two cats, Spooky and Dr. Watson, and conjures up who-done-it stories of her very own for Berkley Prime Crime. Iced Chiffon, out October, 2012, is the first in the Consignment Shop Mystery series. Duffy writes romance as Dianne Castell and is a USA Today bestselling author.
From Avery: I love interviewing our guest, on occasion. Duffy was a good sport. Her answers are so much fun! Enjoy. And then delight in her pecan pie! Oh, my! Delish!
Name three things in your refrigerator right now.
Oh, Lordy! There’s just me and the cats and right now with trying to finish up a book, they eat better than I do. I open the fridge door to… yogurt, sour milk, fermented oj, a slice of pizza from two days ago and one shriveled potato. Martha Stewart would cry.
Do you cook or are you a take-out queen?
I forage. I live on popcorn, yogurt, veggies in a package, Captain Crunch dry and nuts. I really love nuts. I can’t keep peanut butter in the house or I’d eat it in one day right out of the jar. I’m pathetic. I do really cook one day a week. Sunday my kids all come for dinner and I put on a spread with enough leftovers to pack off with each of them. Mom’s are always moms.
What three living people would you invite to a dinner party?
Michael Connelly…I have a crush. George Clooney…I have a crush and he’s from a town close to here and he’s totally darling and a real mid-west guy. Martha Stewart…and make her cook for us.
What three mystery characters would you invite to a dinner party?
Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson!! My license plate is Sherlok, my cat is Dr. Watson. I’m a Holmes nut. If you read my bio you get the point. I’d add Rick Castle from the TV show to put some levity to the evening. Loooove Castle. Such fun!
What's a typical weeknight dinner at your house?
I’m by myself. Usually it’s something like the cats and a bowl of popcorn and bag of dipping veggies so my teeth don’t fall out and watching re-runs of Castle or Matlock or Sherlock Holmes. Can’t do CSI when eating. Tried that once and it wasn’t pretty.
On Sunday when the kids come I do the tablecloth and napkins thing with centerpiece and candles and good china…I love pretty china and crystal. I’ll make a roast or stuff flank steak or try something new from the latest issue of Cooking Light…love that magazine.
What does your protagonist like to eat?
Reagan Summerside has picked up all my bad habits. She’s by herself and eats sitting on the kitchen counter as she’s sold off her furniture. Money is tight for Reagan. She usually goes next door to her auntie KiKi who is the real cook and what Reagan calls the free store. KiKi always has leftover fried chicken, chocolate cake, snickerdoodle cookies, pecan crumb cake, pecan coffee.
Reagan loves eating her way across Savannah and there’s lots of talk about that in Iced Chiffon. Savannah has amazing restaurants all local.
There’s the conquistador sandwich from Zunzi’s with their secret sauce that drips down your arm and is purely orgasmic. There’s pecan chicken from the Pirate House where Robert Louis Stevenson wrote Treasure Island. Parker’s Deli makes the best meatloaf sandwich on the planet…I’ve personally seen grown men cry while eating. Miss Wilkes Boarding house has family-style eating that people wait in line for every day…been there done that, got the T-shirt to prove it. Delish.
For drinks it’s off to Jens and Friends, a little hole-in-the-wall place. Martini heaven. They have Snickers martinis, strawberry-shortcake martinis, peach martinis. All so much fun.
KiKi does the cooking…especially when trying to fix Reagan up with the latest doctor in town. Otherwise it’s eating out at the places above. No better eating than in Savannah! It’s worth going there just to get to the food!
What/who is her favorite Food Network show/cookbook/celebrity chef?
I am totally addicted to American Test Kitchen with Christopher Kimball. Best recipes ever. They have a recipe for roasted pork shoulder that that is out of this world and the easiest thing ever. A triple-berry pie for summer that is a breeze to toss together and bakes up like heaven-on-earth. I love that show.
Is your heroine a good cook or is she going to look around town for someone to feed her curiosity?
Food is huge in Iced Chiffon. Usually Reagan is out and about or mooching food from Auntie KiKi for the Abbott sisters next door. The sisters are professional mourners…nothing more important in Savannah than big funerals and no one gets people a weeping and carrying on like the Abbott sisters.
All the restaurants in Iced Chiffon are real and the food eaten there is what you should order. Savannah is like another character in the book…a very delicious character.
What’s her favorite cheese? [This is a question specifically for Avery's benefit. Say cheese! LOL]
Anything blue-veined. Gorgonzola is one of my favs for sure.
Would you care to share a recipe with us?
See below. :) There is nothing more Southern that pecan pie. Got the recipe straight from Savannah.
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Thanks for having me as a guest blogger. You all are amazing. I need to go eat! After talking food I’m starving! Hummm….maybe I should go to the grocery first. LOL
Duffy's Share on Pecan Pie
There’s no food like Southern comfort food and that’s double for the holidays. Grits are most definitely a major food-group, buttermilk biscuits with butter and honey are the best breakfast food ever and red velvet cake truly is to die for.
Sunday dinner isn’t worth squat if the hush puppies aren’t on the table right between the fried chicken and mashed potatoes. Moon Pies are in the snack drawer next to the pralines and those apples aren’t for eating but putting in the pie mamma’s baking tomorrow.
Sushi is and always will be bait, granola is squirrel food, bone suckin’ sauce is what daddy puts on the ribs, and a spice rack is my thirty-six Bs.
You get the picture, I love Southern cooking, especially Savannah southern cooking. The city is best visited if you eat your way across it. When I was there I got the very best…and easiest…pecan pie recipe ever and I’m here to pass it on to you just in time for Thanksgiving.
Pecan Pie (yummy)
9” unbaked pie crust (if in a hurry Pillsbury in the fridge section)
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
3 eggs slightly beaten
1/3 cut butter melted
½ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup pecan halves (or walnuts)
Heat oven to 350.
Combine corn syrup, sugar, eggs, butter, salt, vanilla and mix well.
Pour into crust, sprinkle with nuts and bake for 50 min till knife comes out clean.
Add whipped cream, cinnamon or caramel ice cream is great. J
And when you take that first bite think of me.
Hugs, Duffy Brown