Showing posts with label Centuries and Sleuths. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Centuries and Sleuths. Show all posts

Friday, June 10, 2011

Black and Blue Burgers

First of all, thank you everyone for all the shout-outs and support for my new book, Grace Interrupted. I'm really excited to bring out Grace's newest adventure because I had such fun writing it. Thanks to my Blog sisters for all the boosts, and congrats again to Wendy and Elizabeth (Riley) on your new releases!!

Now... to food! Believe it or not, Avery and I didn't secretly coordinate posts. Last week, as you may recall, she posted a "Hooray for Barbecue Season," titled Barbecue and Blue. You can read it again here.

Sometimes I feel as though I'm not only "Blog sisters" with all these lovely ladies, but that I'm "Brain sisters" with them as well. (A frightening prospect for them; a reassurance for me!) because this week I'm here to talk about blue cheese stuffed burgers---and I'm betting that when Avery was grilling in the sunshine, I was making these little delights indoors, longing for a little warmth. Fortunately for us, our weather has taken a turn for the better. As I write this it's in the 90s. About time, I say!

Apologies to my vegetarian daughter, but my husband and I need to watch those carbs. We haven't been particularly diligent about that lately, but burgers like these certainly help.

I picked up this recipe from The Low Carb Bible Cookbook, but, as always, adapted it for our use.

Black and Blue Burgers

1 lb (plus or minus) ground beef. I chose a lower fat-percentage chuck they had on sale and I think I had one and a half pounds to work with
1/2 cup shredded cheddar
1/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp Worcestershire
1 clove garlic, minced
Olive oil
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips

Divide the ground beef in half, then half again, then one more time. You should have 8 small sections. Shape each into a patty. Set aside. I placed mine on aluminum foil, spread out like cookies on a cookie sheet.

Combine the cheeses, parsley, mustard, Worcestershire, and garlic. Toss gently, but make sure it's mixed well. Separate into four equal portions. Place a portion atop each of four of the beef patties. Top each of these with a plain patty and smash and seal the edges so that the cheese mixture is trapped inside.

Heat olive oil in skillet, add pepper strips and cook until the edges of the peppers begin to brown slightly.  Add salt, if you like (I didn't). Remove to a small plate.

Add the beef patties to the same skillet, cook on medium-high about 5 minutes. Turn each of them carefully so all the good stuff doesn't spill out.
Top with peppers and keep over heat until cooked through, about 5 more minutes.

Voila! Low-carb and delish! We served these atop a little lettuce. No bun required.

My husband and I liked them very much. One of our other daughters thought they were just okay, but she doesn't care for blue cheese at all. I think next time I might up the cheddar and lessen the blue, but that's just our personal taste. These were great and super easy!

Thanks again, everyone for giving Grace Interrupted such a wonderful launch! And, remember, if you're in the Chicago area Sunday, June 12th, please come by and say hello. I'm having a party and you're invited.

Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore
1:00 - 3:00
7419 W. Madison Street
Forest Park, IL 60131

I'd love to see you there!

* * * * *

Wendy Lyn Watson's new mystery A Parfait Murderfeatures a story line about the Lantana Round-Up Rodeo Queen Pageant. To celebrate, Wendy's giving away a little cowboy couture: a leather and rhinestone cuff, and a "rodeo queen" keychain. 

Eligibility: This contest is open to everyone living in the U.S. and Canada. One entry per person, please. 

How to Enter: Send proof of purchase of A Parfait Murder (either a receipt, or a picture of you holding the book), by e-mail to Put the words "Parfait Giveaway" in the subject line.

Entries must be received by 5:00 PM Central Standard Time on Friday, June 17. Wendy will randomly select one entry and announce the winner here on the Mystery Lovers' Kitchen blog on Saturday, June 18. She will contact the winner via e-mail. If she does not receive a response within 7 days, she will draw a new winning name. 

* * * * * * * * * * * 

Riley Adams (Elizabeth Spann Craig) is also running a contest to celebrate the release of Finger Lickin' Dead, her new Memphis BBQ Mystery. 

To learn how to enter Riley/Elizabeth's contest, click here and visit her blog Mystery Writing is Murder

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Contest Winners! – Book Launch Pics! - Shel’s Ranch Dressing!

Drumroll please….

Today I announce the winners of the pre-order contest for Grace Under Pressure. But before I do, I just want to thank every single person who picked up a copy of my new book. As emails arrived, I assigned everyone a number. When I got home after my book launch party Sunday night I went through all my emails one more time making sure I hadn’t missed anyone (I hadn’t) and then I reached into my box of numbers (a nice thing to keep handy when running contests from time to time) and came up with my two winners.

They are:

Margaret (Mamadrama)

Ken M.

I will be in touch with both of you via email ASAP and then you can start shopping for the best treats in the world – books!


I hosted a book launch party at Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore (Forest Park, IL) on Sunday. I just wanted to include a few fun pictures here… If you’d like to see more, I’m posting the rest of them on my personal blog: Julie Hyzy’s blog. Come visit! (Side note: Krista is uploading my Mystery Lovers’ Kitchen post for me because Blogger is out of service in my area. This means, of course, that the photos I intended to post on my personal blog may not be up there right away. But I plan to keep at it until Blogger lets me in again. So if they’re not there now, they will be soon!)

Last week was super busy as I prepared for the launch and this week will be even busier as we gear up for my daughter’s graduation party. Lots of parties in a row! So, what to do when we’re hungry? What to eat?

How about a quick salad? And Shel (who frequently comments here) provided me with a wonderful recipe for ranch dressing. We love ranch dressing in this house and I usually use the Hidden Valley Ranch dry seasoning packets to make my own. But Shel’s recipe is truly from scratch and it’s great to have in the fridge because we gobble up ranch on everything from salads, to hot wings, to carrot sticks, to….. well, almost everything tastes better with ranch dressing, doesn’t it?

This one is quick, simple, and delicious. Shel is graciously allowing me to share it with you.

Ranch Dressing

Shel says:

1 cup mayonnaise (you can use low fat, but...why? *grin*)
1 cup sour cream (see above)
1 cup (approximately) buttermilk (adjust for thickness you want)

From here, it's all up to you. I use two cloves of garlic, finely minced, dried parsley flakes, dried dill, Tony Chachere's cajun seasoning, lemon pepper, and anything else I think to throw in it. You can, of course,
use the fresh herbs instead of dried, but I eat this stuff by the quart, so dried is easier for me.

Whisk everything together and refrigerate. If you use this instead of mayo on your potato salad, you might want to adjust the garlic, unless you're like me and there truly *is* no such thing as too much garlic.

I made this over the weekend and it was great! I used a bit more garlic – because, like Shel said, there is no such thing as too much. Also, because I didn’t have the Cajun seasoning, I tossed in a bit more dill and parsley. Really delicious and fun because you can adjust it to suit your tastes. I particularly liked the fact that it seemed just as tasty but decidedly less salty than what we’re used to and I’m always happy to cut out a little salt.

Thanks for stopping by. Thanks for helping me launch Grace Under Pressure. Stay tuned for more details about Avery’s contest! I’m really eager to read The Long Quiche Goodbye. I’ve already pre-ordered, of course!