Showing posts with label #Cozymystery. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #Cozymystery. Show all posts

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Slow Cooked Beef in Red Wine #Easter #recipe by Linda Wiken, author


If a chilly Easter weekend is forecast in your area, here's a warm and filling meal that will be waiting for you after Maundy Thursday services. Just turn on your slow cooker in the morning, and you'll have an easy evening meal ready for when you are.

In my next book, Marinating in Murder which comes out March, 2018, J.J. Tanner needed to come up with a last minute recipe. That's what happens when you invite your Dinner Club over without giving it much thought. Of course, thoughts of the murder investigation were uppermost in her mind.

So, J.J. and I, pulled a new cookbook off the shelves, The French Slow Cooker by Michele Scicolone and found this wonderful recipe for beef in red wine, done in a slow cooker. Now, neither J.J. nor I can leave a recipe alone, so we added some ingredients along the way, switched-out others, and gave it a try. What I found, thanks to the advice at my local liquor store, was the better the wine, the better the end result.

The family loved it and really, it was so easy, it's going to be one of my go-to recipes when I have but a day's notice for hosting a dinner. Or, as I mentioned, ready and waiting for an after church service meal.



Here's what I used:

1 1/2 lb. beef, cut into 2-inch cubes (I chose round roast but use your favorite cut; chuck or blade works well)
1/2 c. diced tomatoes
2 parsnips, peeled and sliced
1 large onion, chopped
1 celery rib, sliced
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 sprig fresh thyme
Himalayan and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
1 c. red wine (I used an oak-barreled Merlot Reserva)
1 c. beef bouillon mix or stock
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce 
1 tbsp. cornstarch with enough water to make a paste





Here's what to do: 

1. Peel, slice, and chop the parsnips, celery, onion, and garlic. Place in the bottom of the slow cooker along with the sprigs of rosemary and thyme.

2.  Pat the meat dry and then slice into 2-inch cubes.




3. Heat olive oil in a heavy frying pan and when hot, add the beef.  Reduce heat to medium and stir to get all sides browned, for about 15 min.

4. Remove the beef with a slotted spoon and place on top of vegetables. Add the wine to juices remaining in the pan and bring to a simmer for about 1 min. 

5. Pour over the beef in the slow cooker; add the diced tomatoes and the beef broth. Season with sale and pepper.



6. Cover and cook for about 8 hours at low temperature setting. Remove from juices when finished cooking. Add the cornstarch paste mix and stir, if you want a thicker sauce. Otherwise, use as is.

7.  Serve with rice or potatoes and a green vegetable, such as broccoli or brussel sprouts.



ROUX THE DAY, A Dinner Club Mystery is now available in paper and as an e-book.


The first in the Dinner Club Mysteries is available at your favorite bookstore and on-line, as a paperback and as an e-book.  
Recipes included!



Writing as Erika Chase -- the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series are available on-line or at your favorite bookstore.

             
Visit Linda at www.lindakwiken.com
Love to hear from you at my Facebook author page and
on Twitter  @LWiken  
Also appearing at www.killercharacters.com
                                                                               


Visit Erika at www.erikachase.com 
 at my Facebook author page
and on Twitter  @erika_chase. 







Thursday, March 23, 2017

Roasted veggies recipe by Linda Wiken, author @LWiken


Have I admitted before that I'm not an enthusiastic vegetable eater? It probably stems from my childhood. My Mom wasn't a very creative cook. Our meals were the basic -- potatoes, meat, and a veggie. And that was often canned cream corn, canned niblets corn, frozen peas, or if it was fresh, it was most probably boiled. A daub of butter went a long way to add to the taste.

Veggies seldom appealed to me.

My Mom was however, a fabulous baker. All things Swedish appeared freshly baked when the ladies came over for afternoon coffee, as they regularly did, rotating houses. Christmas, of course, was a baking bonanza. Most delicious.

But back to vegetables. I've over the years learned that using them in a stir fry was a clever way to fool myself into making sure I ate a reasonable amount. But even more recently, I've gone on a roasting binge. I'm ready to try out any combination of veggies, herbs, and olive oils. And each one tastes unique.

This recipe I threw together, literally, and happily share with you.

What you need:

2 golden beets
2 large cremini mushrooms
1 leek
mix of red and yellow peppers
4 tbsp. olive oil
pinch of Himalayan salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
fresh chopped cilantro







What to do:

1.Parboil golden beets for approx. ten minutes.

2. Preheat oven to 400 F.  Thoroughly wash leek and slice horizontally. Dice peppers. Cut the beets and mushrooms into quarters. Place all in a medium sized bowl, add olive oil. Add rosemary and thyme and toss..

3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread out mixture so that everything roasts evenly.

4. Place in preheated oven for 25 minutes or so.

5. Dish up and serve with your favorite carbs and meat.




ROUX THE DAY, A Dinner Club Mystery is now available in paper and as an e-book.


The first in the Dinner Club Mysteries is available at your favorite bookstore and on-line, as a paperback and as an e-book.  
Recipes included!



Writing as Erika Chase -- the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series are available on-line or at your favorite bookstore.

             
Visit Linda at www.lindakwiken.com
Love to hear from you at my Facebook author page and
on Twitter  @LWiken  
Also appearing at www.killercharacters.com
                                                                               


Visit Erika at www.erikachase.com 
 at my Facebook author page
and on Twitter  @erika_chase. 






Sunday, March 12, 2017

Coconut Cupcakes from Mrs. Hudson's Tea Room #bookgiveaway from author Vicki Delany


Today we welcome Vicki Delany back to Mystery Lovers' Kitchen. You may also know her as Eva Gates. She's written police procedure and caper series, stand-alone Gothic suspense, and cozies but today she's introducing a brand new series, the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mysteries with a hardcover book giveaway. Be sure to leave a comment to be entered in the draw, US entries only please.
 
After you’ve engaged in a shopping frenzy at the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium, located at 220 Baker Street, West London, Massachusetts, be sure and pop next door for afternoon tea at Mrs. Hudson’s.
Head baker Jayne Wilson does a marvelous job of crating the perfect, fully-traditional afternoon tea. You might even be lucky enough to get one of the special Sherlock tea pots and matching cups.
Occasionally, for a special occasion, Jayne is forced to reply on her business partner Gemma Doyle for help in the kitchen. 
A kitchen is not my natural environment, but the following afternoon found me in the back of the tea room as ordered, ready to help out.
“It would look more appealing if you mixed the offerings up a little,” I said.
“No, Gemma, it would not.”
“We can tuck the circular sandwiches around the scones, and the square sandwiches in with these small brownies, that way you’d have consistency of shape.”
“I don’t want consistency of shape. I want sandwiches on the bottom tier, scones in the middle, and the tarts and cookies on the top. That’s the way afternoon tea has been served since time immemorial.”
“Actually, afternoon tea isn’t a long-standing tradition. It’s generally considered to have begun around 1840 when Anna, Duchess of Bedford…”
“Gemma, stop talking. Butter that bread. The smoked salmon spread and the chicken salad are already prepared. The cucumbers, watercress, and herbs are sliced. All you have to do is put the sandwiches together. Follow the assembly instructions I prepared, and cut them according to the design I printed out for you. When they’re ready, cover them in plastic wrap. Got it?”
“I am capable of making sandwiches.” I glanced around the busy kitchen. “Do you have a ruler?”
“What do you need a ruler for?”
“It says here that the cucumber sandwiches are to be two inches long by three quarters of an inch wide. A ruler would ensure accuracy.”
“Roughly, Gemma. Roughly is good enough.”
“Very well.” I set about cutting the crusts off the white sandwich bread slices laid out before me. Jayne began rolling out the dough for another batch of strawberry tarts. The tea room had been exceptionally busy all day, she said, meaning they’d had to serve some of the food she’d prepared for the big group due to arrive at four. At the moment, Jocelyn was washing dishes and Fiona was arranging pots of tea for a table of six who’d just come in.
I was rather enjoying this making of sandwiches. Like a well-oiled machine, I went down the row buttering the crustless slices of bread (lightly), back up the row adding an ice-cream scoop of chicken salad, down the row sprinkling on pretty, green herbs, back up the row putting the tops on, and finally slicing them into triangles.
“Those have got to be the neatest sandwiches I’ve ever seen,” Fiona said.
“Thank you,” I said. Next up: the smoked salmon spread, which would be rolled into pinwheel shapes.

Jayne often makes a mini-version of these cupcakes so go in the top tier of the tray. As dictated by tradition. 

Ingredients
·         1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
·         2 teaspoons baking powder
·         1/2 teaspoon salt
·         1/2 cup packed sweetened shredded coconut
·         6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
·         1 1/3 cups sugar
·         2 large eggs, plus 2 large egg whites
·         3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
·         1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
·         1 1/3 cups large-flake unsweetened coconut

1.      Preheat oven to 350°F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners.

2.      Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Pulse shredded coconut in a food processor until finely ground, and whisk into flour mixture.
3.      With and electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in whole eggs, whites and vanilla, scrapping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of coconut milk, and beating until combined after each.

4.      Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling eat three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in centers come out clean, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven; turn out cupcakes onto wire racks and let cool completely. cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature , or freeze up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

5.      To finish, use a small offset spatula to spread a generous dome of icing onto each cupcake, and, if desired, garnish with flaked coconut. Store at room temperature until ready to serve.
Icing: Use your favorite buttercream vanilla icing. I like to use a splash of coconut milk rather than plain milk. If you don’t normally add milk to your icing, you can cut down slightly on the butter and replace with coconut milk.

 

Vicki Delany is one of Canada’s most prolific and varied crime writers, author of twenty-four crime novels, including standalone Gothic thrillers, the Constable Molly Smith series, and the Year Round Christmas Mysteries.  Under the pen name Eva Gates she writes the Lighthouse Library cozy series from Penguin. 


Her latest is Elementary She Read, the first in the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series from Crooked Lane (March 14, 2017). 

 

Vicki is the past-president of Crime Writers of Canada. Her work has been nominated for the Bony Blithe and the Arthur Ellis Awards.


Visit Vicki at www.vickidelany.com. Facebook:  Vicki Delany & Eva Gates (evagatesauthor) and twitter: @vickidelany and @evagatesauthor

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Roasted French Beans, Mushrooms, and Onions with Panko #recipe by Linda Wiken, author, @LWiken



There aren't many vegetables I don't like, although there are some that I feel need to be dressed up before presenting at a meal.

Cauliflower is one, green beans is another. No offence meant to green bean or cauliflower lovers!

But the great news is that it's so easy these days to do just that. Even just roasting these veggies in olive oil, salt and pepper is so easy and transforms the taste.

But I found a recipe that sounded just right, although it added a few more steps to the roasting process. This is a recipe for guests, I decided. And, of course, I played around with it, because that's what we do. I'm not sure where it originated but my guess might be online at  Bon Appetit, one of my favorite sources.

I've switched out the green beans for French beans-- love the shape and size. The choice of onion was new, too, as were the mushrooms and cheese. I'm thinking this would work great for cauliflower, too!


What you need: (to serve four)

1 1/2 lbs. French beans
6 shallots, sliced into rings
8 oz. mushrooms
8 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 c. Panko
1/2 tsp. each freshly chopped rosemary, bay, sage, and tarragon
1/2 c. grated Asiago cheese
1 lemon, zest and juice







 
What to do:

Preheat over to 425 F.  Place French beans, mushrooms and onions in a large bowl and toss them with 3 tbsp. olive oil.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and arrange the French beans mixture on them. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender and browned, approx. 30 to 35 min.

Heat the remaining 2 tbsp. olive oil in medium skillet over medium heat.  Add Panko and herbs, stirring constantly until golden brown, about  3 min. Remove from heat and stir in Asiago and lemon zest.

Squeeze some lemon juice over the roasted vegetables and top with the Panko mixture.

Enjoy!


Book 2 in the Dinner Club Mysteries,  ROUX THE DAY, is coming on March 7th!
To pre-order, please check your favorite bookstore website.


The first in the Dinner Club Mysteries is available at your favorite bookstore and on-line, as a paperback and as an e-book.  
Recipes included!



Writing as Erika Chase -- the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series are available on-line or at your favorite bookstore.

             
Visit Linda at www.lindakwiken.com
Love to hear from you at my Facebook author page and
on Twitter  @LWiken  
Also appearing at www.killercharacters.com
                                                                               


Visit Erika at www.erikachase.com 
 at my Facebook author page
and on Twitter  @erika_chase. 






Thursday, February 9, 2017

Fettuccine with Grape Tomatoes and Broccoli, in Olive Oil by author Linda Wiken @LWiken #recipe


I love pasta dishes because they're usually so easy to put together. And yet, they're also ideal for a special meal, such as a romantic Valentine evening at home.

I've long ago given up using a recipe. What goes in depends on what I have on  hand. I do like to make sure there's something green though and broccoli is often my go to veggie.

For a pop of color, I've added fresh, firm grape tomatoes. And, to finish it off, it's tossed with a wild mushroom and sage olive oil I found at my local specialty store, the Unrefined Olive. This one is organic, by the way. I like to try a different flavored olive oil every time I go shopping there and so far, I've not been disappointed.

It's a totally sensual experience. I usually limit my tastings to three different olive oils, mainly because I'd never be able to make up my mind otherwise. They also have a large variety of vinegar but that's for my next trip.





What you'll need:

fettuccine noodles
1/2 c. grape tomatoes, halved
one small head of broccoli, cut into small florets
1 small garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 c. black olives, sliced
chicken strips
Asiago cheese, to grate over top
2 tbsp. olive oil for sauteing
flavored olive oil to taste


What to do:

Prepare the broccoli, grape tomatoes, black olives, and garlic. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in saute pan to medium and add the prepared items to it, stirring occasionally.


Heat enough water in which to boil the pasta. Add a pinch of salt when it reaches boiling and then add the pasta. Cook approx. 8 minutes or until al dente.


While pasta is cooking, remove the veggies from the saute pan, add another tbsp. olive oil to pan, heat and then add chicken strips. they can be fresh or frozen. Cook until ready.

When the pasta is ready, drain and add to the veggie mixture, tossing along with flavored olive oil. Remove excess oil from the chicken strips and add to the pasta.

Grate some Asiago cheese, Parmesan, or your favorite over top...and enjoy.




What do you like adding to your pasta dishes?



Book 2 in the Dinner Club Mysteries,  ROUX THE DAY, is coming on March 7th!
To pre-order, please check your favorite bookstore website.


The first in the Dinner Club Mysteries is available at your favorite bookstore and on-line, as a paperback and as an e-book.  
Recipes included!




Writing as Erika Chase -- the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series are available on-line or at your favorite bookstore.

             
Visit Linda at www.lindakwiken.com
Love to hear from you at my Facebook author page and
on Twitter  @LWiken  
Also appearing at www.killercharacters.com
                                                                               


Visit Erika at www.erikachase.com 
 at my Facebook author page
and on Twitter  @erika_chase.