Sunday, February 9, 2014

When In Doubt, Throw in Whiskey

A very special welcome to Elizabeth Lee! Elizabeth has the enviable series title of Nut House Mysteries. So cute! I know it makes me feel right at home. But these are edible nuts, like pecans!  A TOUGH NUT TO KILL, the first in the series, was just released on February 4th. Elizabeth has very kindly agreed to give away a copy of her book to one lucky person who leaves a comment here today. Good luck, everyone!

In A TOUGH NUT TO KILL, the one thing you wouldn’t call Miss Amelia of The Nut House in Riverville, Texas, is straitlaced.  She may be seventy-seven but you’d better not call her “Dearie” or “Sweetie” or “Honey” either, unless you want that special pecan pie of hers to be served upside down in the box.

The Nut House is where a lot of the pecans grown on the Blanchard family ranch are turned into Sassie Tassies, and fried pies, and spiced pecans, and on and on—anything Miss Amelia can come up with, all very good according to the citizens of Riverville.

The thing with Miss Amelia and her granddaughter, Lindy Blanchard, is that when they get mixed up in murder, especially when one of their own family is accused of the killing, high dudgeon comes pouring out, and trickery, and investigative skills enough to rival Sherlock Holmes.

The only trouble with solving crimes, Miss Amelia finds, is that her time in the kitchen is cut way back.  The Nut House could suffer.   She figures she’s got to come up with something fast and wonderful to keep her customers happy while she’s out visiting suspicious new friends and calling on a few old buddies like the ‘girls’,’ a set of twins in their eighties who spend most of their time in the saddle, out shooting rattlers on their spread.  The ‘Girls’ argue like two squirrels in a sack, but have a couple of solid ideas about human rattlers they’d like to take aim at.   

Since Lindy Blanchard, like her meemaw, is creative and driven, the two of them find a way to intrigue and appeal to customers while still hot on the trail of a murdering wretch.  What they come up with is adding a dash of Garrison Brothers Texas Bourbon to some real easy-to-make, do-ahead recipes, and then advertise them as all ‘Pure Texas.’

Nobody’s about to complain.  That would be like turning your back on the Texas flag.

What Miss Amelia will tell you though, if you’re a teetotaler, is to leave out the bourbon in her recipe.   Last thing she wants is your lost soul on her conscience.  But, in fairness, she did add that if you’re having a bad day, maybe you just found a dead body or were out chasing a killer—feel free to go ahead and leave out the rest of the ingredients and just drink the whiskey.

Here’s her recipe for easy-to-make Texas Outhouse Moons.

TEXAS OUTHOUSE MOONS

1 cup soft butter or margarine
1 cup sifted confectioners sugar
2 cups flour
3 tbsp. bourbon
2 cups finely chopped pecans
More confectioners sugar for rolling cookies

Preheat oven to 350

Cream butter and confectioners sugar together until smooth.
Add flour, bourbon, and pecans.
Mix well.
Shape into 2 inch quarter-moon crescents and place on a cookie sheet.
Bake 10-15 minutes.

Keep a close eye on these.  They should be set, but not too brown.
When cool, roll in extra confectioners sugar and get the heck out of the kitchen.






Elizabeth Lee (aka Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli) lives in the north woods, back with the deer and the turkeys and the bear.  She has published prize-winning essays and short stories but loves writing mystery novels.  Her first was Gift of Evil, from Bantam, then Dead Dancing Women, Dead Floating Lovers, Dead Sleeping Shaman, Dead Dogs and Englishmen, and Dead Little Dolly from Midnight Ink.  A Tough Nut to Kill is the first in The Nut House series from Berkley Publishing, part of the larger series: Soup to Nuts.  



Don't forget to leave a comment to enter the drawing for a copy of
A TOUGH NUT TO KILL!

70 comments:

  1. I must admit, I'm allergic to nuts. And yet, this series appeals to me. Probably because of all the times when I tell someone I'm allergic to nuts and they ask how I can possibly live with myself in that case.

    And they're right.

    carstairs38@hotmail.com

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  2. Sounds delicious! Pecans have always been my favorite nut!

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  3. I've got my copy sitting on my read-these-soon pile!

    Good luck everyone

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  4. Elizabeth, these moons sound yummy. Looking forward to reading A Tough Nut To Kill!

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  5. Great recipe, I'll have to put it on my must try list.

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  6. These sound excellent. I love pecans, although I'm the only one in my family who does. I'll have to wait to try this recipe until I'm going someplace where I can share them. The series sounds excellent too.

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  7. These sound yummy!! And I can't wait to read this book!

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  8. Elizabeth, what a fun recipe, and what a fun post about Amelia. Love it. I'm sure this series will have plenty of nut-loving fans!

    Best, Avery / Daryl

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  9. kim j
    the recipe looks great and the series looks lik a fantastic read!

    kjohnson952@yahoo.com

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  10. Fun premise! I'm looking forward to getting addicted to yet another cozy series. I may have to retire early so that I can read all of these books!

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  11. Love trying out new cozy series, even though it keeps increasing my TBR list! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity. kuzlin(at)aol(dot)com

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  12. Welcome to our Kitchen, Elizabeth. "When in doubt, throw in whiskey" -- great philosophy and recipe, and I love your Miss Amelia. Warm congrats on the launch of your new series. Whether we eat nuts or not, I think *everyone* can relate to living in a nut house!

    ~ Cleo

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    1. I sure can relate, Cleo, though I usually say it's a zoo around here.

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  13. I love pecans! This book sounds awesome and so does the recipe! Thanks for sharing!

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  14. Christina Girdner - BlevinsFebruary 9, 2014 at 10:31 AM

    Great recipe I definitely have to try this

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  15. This series sounds like soooo much fun! As a native Texan who grew up shelling pecans for Momma's pecan pies, I know I'll enjoy reading A TOUGH NUT TO KILL.

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  16. Sounds like a great series. Looking forward to it and more recipes!

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  17. I always love reading a new series. Pecans were one of the first nuts I ever tasted as a kid. My Grandmother made a pumpkin pecan pie at Christmas. Wonderful

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  18. I think I'll leave the whiskey in! Excited to read this! :)

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  19. Sounds like another great series.....

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  20. Sounds like a winner just the way they are!

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  21. Nut House Mysteries - are you writing about my family? Can't wait to read the first in this series, and try out the Outhouse recipe.
    kpbarnett1941[at]aol.com

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  22. You had me at Nut House mystery.... and then the Outhouse recipe, LOL!

    emmasmom AT wi DOT rr DOT com

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  23. I'm always ready for another new series especially if it's a foodie!
    Cheli
    cyderryATyahooDOTcom

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  24. Sounds yummy! And a new series "to boot" (sly Texas reference). Sign me up!

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  25. Anything with pecans and I'm there! Funny post, and sounds like a fun series. I love these 'girls' with character. Used to say they reminded me of my mother, but as I get older, someone commented that it could be me now - so I don't say that so much any more.

    Another series for my TBR list!

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  26. This sounds like a really good book. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  27. Would love to win this, I love new series and reading authors I haven't met yet

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  28. This recipe sounds so yummy! I can't wait to try it! Thank you for the chance to win!!

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  29. Timing is everything, and you ladies never fail. I have my culinary book club, Dishing Up Murder, this week. I have been stressing over what to bring, as our guest is an author I really respect: Nancy Pickard. Reading this gave me the inspiration to make some candied pecans to set out for munching during discussions. (I think I am making a chicken dish for dinner). And a Soup to Nuts series? Sounds like it was made for this book club. I'll definitely have to try it and recommend to the group.

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  30. I really should read this book. Don't they say, "nuts for the nutty"? That'd be me.

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  31. The Nut House sounds like a delicious place to visit. I also like that the characters are senior citizens - what an intriguing series this appears to be. Looking forward to reading the first installment.

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  32. Congrats on your new book. I can't wait to read it. The recipe of the moons you posted sounds really yummy. I can't wait to try it.

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  33. I'm not a cook, but I do love pecans and cooking mysteries! Looking forward to the new series.

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  34. Sounds like a delightful new series that I would love to explore.

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  35. I would love to sit down with those "ladies" and share a drink. they sound like a marvelous hoot!

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  36. My favourite cozy themes are those based in agriculture as I used to own a ranch. I so look forward to this fun new series !

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  37. What fun Elizabeth! congrats on the nut house mysteries...as a psychologist, have to love this series:)

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  38. Never heard of the cookies before, but they sound good.

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  39. The recipe sounds yummy and the book sounds like a good one. Can't wait to try both.

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  40. Sounds like a great cozy mystery.

    xzjh04@ gmail.com

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  41. Definitely going to be adding Tough Nut to Kill to my TBR list and will try the Texas Outhouse Moons. I plan on enjoying both very soon! Thanks for the insight on.this new series. Thank you for post, recipe and giveaway chance.

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  42. The book sounds wonderful and the recipe sounds delicious! Thank you for this wonderful opportunity!

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  43. I just started a Crafternoon Book club and I think this book would be great for the next one that I get to pick! Maybe we can make the reciepies in the back instead of crafting!

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  44. Oh my, I love cozies, especially those with, ahem, "older" characters as much as I love pecans (and new pecan recipes). So this series is certainly speaking to me.

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  45. I haven't read this series before, but they sound delightful Will check it out. Love finding new recipes to try, too. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  46. Love nuts of all kind. Those you eat and those you read about. This sounds like a great start to a new series!! Would love to win this book to read and review!! Ronnaloes@msn.com

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  47. Love nuts in all their forms. Those you can eat and those you read about. Would love to win this book to read and review!! Ronnalord@msn.com

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  48. As a Texan I look forward to reading the first in this series. (I hope it becomes a series) I really like the characters even though I haven't read this yet. Looking forward to the twins, they sound like a hoot. Plus I love pecans and look forward to cooking with them when they are fresh and in season.

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  49. I am so excited - a new author to read and a new book series. Love the titles of the book and the series. I sometimes think I live in a nuthouse. Looking forward to recipes with pecans, one of my favorite nuts. Good luck with this series. Hope I win !!!

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  50. thank you for the recipe!! I will pass it along!!
    also thank you for the giveaway!!!
    congrats on the book!!

    cyn209 at juno dot com

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  51. I'd be "nuts" not to try and win this book!

    18LMMS@gmail.com

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  52. This sounds like a great read and those cookies sound divine :)

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  53. Meemaw Amelia sounds like a wonderful character as do the twins; aka "The Girls", in their eighties hunting rattlers.The southern setting and the pecans has this Georgia girl adding this one to her reading list. Thanks for the wonderful recipe and a fun giveaway. Sounds like a wonderful new series!

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  54. This looks like a fun series. I'll be adding it to my very long list of books to pick up!

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  55. The moons sound yummy, I think I may give those a try. I love the cover, I have this on my tbr list, it sounds interesting. Thanks for the chance to win.
    momzillasteel@gmail.com

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  56. My kind of book, food and murder. :P
    I also can not turn down a book with a Meemaw in it. I have one of my own that I love dearly.

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  57. This series sounds fun. I'll have to try this recipe

    kaye.killgore@comcast.net

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  58. I love pecans---and that recipe sounds so easy. I think I'll try it.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  59. Hold the bourbon for me...I'm allergic to alcohol. But otherwise, they sound delish.

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  60. What a great blog posting and what a unique subject for a cozy. I cannot wait to order this book and get it read, but if I have " one pecan of good luck", :) maybe I will win it. Probably not, but I loved the write up and the recipe and I am sure that this series is going to be a big hit for you , Elizabeth. One of my all time favorite nuts is pecans and I make a lot of Pecan Tassies as well as full size pecan pies, but not with the cream chees in the crust like the Tassies have. After being a food columnist for many years, all books with food in the story line is right up my alley or should I say Galley style kitchen. :) Thank you for the great information and the nice cookie recipe.
    Cynthia

    ceblain(AT)tmlponline(DOT)net

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  61. I love pecans in just about anything and cannot wait to try this recipe! Thank you!

    liongoddess @ gmail . com

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  62. love nuts; love mysteries; can't wait to read it

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  63. I'll have to have the collections librarian at work order your book. The recipe looks good too.

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  64. Sounds like a great new series...I like the idea of an older main character. I will be adding to my TBR list!

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