Saturday, July 4, 2015

More Kind Words

Well, would you look at this! A very nice review of What Took You So Long...

Thank you, Shauna!

For those of you in the Portland area, I'll be signing my books at the Lake Oswego Deseret Bookstore, 15010 SW Bangy Road, on Friday, July 10 from 5 to 8 p.m. It would be great to see you!

Aunt Sophie wanted me to pass on this great idea for a variation on everybody's summer favorite, S'mores:

Find some vanilla or chocolate waffle cones (or some of both) and fill them with a mixture of chopped strawberries and bananas, miniature marshmallows and some chocolate chips or broken Hershey bar pieces. Wrap them in foil and put them on your grill or campfire for about five minutes or so. They're going to be less messy than the flat graham cracker version. What a treat!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Have you read it yet?

Rumor had it that What Took You So Long hit some kind of a best seller list recently. Have you read it yet? If you like a grown-up love story, you'll like this book. When you read it, go to and and put a little review on there so you'll help other readers know what they're getting into.

To celebrate, I fixed a chicken dish for my family that I'm going to share with you. It came from my mother-in-law who raised seven children but was never a confident cook. This proves she was wrong about herself.

First you grease a 9X13 pan. Don't you just love that new pan spray product that makes greasing a pan so easy? I use that all the time. Well, next you spread a cup and a half of raw rice in the pan. It can be white, but I used a mixture of brown and wild rice that turned out great. Then you sprinkle about a cup of shredded cheese on the rice. Next you lay eight boneless skinless chicken breasts over the cheese and season them with salt and pepper. Sprinkle a packet of onion soup mix over the chicken.

Next you pour two cans of chicken broth over that, and then you spoon here and there a can of cream of chicken soup. Although the recipe says to put it in the oven for an hour at 350 degrees, then take it out, add more cheese and cover it with foil for another half hour of cooking, what I did was put the foil on and bake it for two hours at 325. That second layer of cheese is just not necessary.

My timing was off so it was done way before the guests got here, but I took the foil off and left it in the oven on the "warm" setting until they arrived. It was still nice and tender, both the rice and the chicken. I served it with green beans and a green salad and we all enjoyed the meal. You ought to try it.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Trying Something New

My granddaughter Corky likes to come over and cook with me occasionally, and it's a good way to pass along tips and shortcuts that I've discovered over the years. You can tell tell tell, but unless you show show show, things just don't get passed on to the next generation like they should.

We made this unusual Buttermilk Bran Loaf, and it turned out just great so I thought I'd pass the recipe along. It's heavy and moist and delicious, and it doesn't have any eggs in it. Yep--the only moisture is the buttermilk. Here it is.

Heat the oven 350 and oil a loaf pan. Mix 2 cups wheat bran cereal (like All-Bran, but I guess you could use flakes, too) with 2 cups whole wheat flour. Add 1 teaspoon soda, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1 cup brown sugar. Then you stir in 2 cups of buttermilk. That's it. Oh, you can add a cup of raisins if you like, but it's good if you leave 'em out, too. Corky found golden raisins in my pantry and that's what we used. Turned out great. Anyway, let the batter stand in a warm place for half an hour before you scrape it into the pan. Bake 30 to 40 minutes until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean. This is so sweet and nutty tasting you don't need much more than butter on it when you serve it, although peanut butter would be good, too.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

It's Still Soup Weather

We're having an early spring out here in the West, though a cool snap this week is giving fruit growers some concern about their crops, but I say it's not too late for soup. In fact, you could probably get in to the last of your potatoes you stored over the winter and use up the last of them for this, except if they're Russets. Most people like those for bakers or hash browns, but for me they're too mealy in soup. Suit yourself. As my father used to say, to each his own said the farmer as he kissed the cow.

Back to the soup. It's best to use Yukon Gold or Red for a good creamy soup because the texture is smoother and they get soft and mushy easier, which thickens the soup. Innyhoo, chop up a pot full of those (you don't even have to peel them if you don't want to, but remember that the longer they're stored the thicker the skins get and maybe you don't want that in your soup) and cover them with water. Boil till they're good and mushy, adding some chopped celery and chopped onion too. When it all looks yummy, drop in a cube of butter--the real thing not that one-molecule-away-from-plastic stuff known as margarine.

Be sure to season it with salt and pepper. I use white pepper so people don't think their food has fly specks in it. Potatoes absorb a lot of salt, so be careful not to overdo it in that department. You can add some cream or milk for taste, and if it isn't thick enough already, sprinkle in a little bit of instant potatoes. That's easier than making a cream sauce to thicken it, but you can do the cream sauce if you like.

For a special protein touch, fry up some thick-sliced bacon or chop up some ham. If you're planning to use that, go easier on the salt earlier.

So that's a great spring soup to make before the crocuses are gone and the daffodils all die off. Let me know if you enjoy it or if you have your own special ingredients you like to add to it. I know some people like to throw in a handful of fresh spring peas. That's always good, too. I've been known to dump in a little leftover corn or a bit of shredded carrot. It's all good, but just remember it's potato soup.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Just to Let You Know...

It has come to my attention that What Took You So Long, my new novel now available in paperback and as an ebook on, is also the title of a collection of steamy lesbian erotica. Pretty funny, huh. Just don't get 'em confused. My book already has a five-star review. You can add yours later. It really is a good book--not the typical LDS romance, but a grownup love story.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Listen Up!

If you haven't picked up that new book yet, the story of how John and Lainie got together--it's called What Took You so Long--you'll have a chance to get it and meet the author at a book signing event on Saturday March 21 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Pioneer Book store, 450 West Center in Provo. She'll be there with two of her writer friends, too. So that's Pam Williams, Janet Jensen and Robin King all at one time in one place. They're going to have some goodies made from my favorite recipes, too, and drawings for prizes. Put it on your calendar. You'll be glad you took some time to go meet all those interesting people.