Monday, November 29, 2010

RecipeMonday: Kayden's Lasagna

Kayden’s Lasagna

Ingredients:


Meat Sauce

375 grams of diced garlic sausage

1 pound of lean hamburger

2 156ml cans of garlic tomato paste

1 large jar of marinara sauce

1 large can of diced tomatoes

1 clove garlic

1 tablespoon oregano

1 teaspoon parsley

Cayenne pepper, to taste (I use: 1/2 teaspoon)

Salt and pepper, to taste

1/3 of a large diced white onion (the other 2/3 with the vegetable filling)


Filling One

1 diced small zucchini

1 diced small red pepper

1 diced small green pepper

1 cup sliced mushrooms

2/3 of a large diced white onion

2 gloves of garlic

Salt and pepper, to taste


Filling Two

1 large container of cottage cheese

1 tablespoon of freshly chopped basil


12-16 lasagna noodles, depending on the size of the intended casserole dish

1 large brick of marble cheese, shredded

½ cup fresh Parmesan cheese

Optional: before baking sprinkle with oregano and parsley


Directions:

Soak lasagna noodles in HOT water in the casserole dish you plan to cook the lasagna in for 20-30 minutes. This method cuts out boiling, and yet another pot to clean.

In a large saucepan, break apart and fry hamburger until cooked through on medium heat. Add salt and pepper. Then add garlic sausage and onion, and allow to cook for another few minutes before pouring in marinara sauce, semi-drained (leave some liquid, but not a lot) canned tomatoes and tomato paste. Put in spices, salt and pepper. Cover and allow to cook for 30-45 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally.

In another pan, sauté onions in butter until soft. Add the rest of the vegetables, with salt and pepper until tender. Set aside.

In a bowl, mix cottage cheese and fresh basil.

Drain the semi-cooked lasagna noodles and shake excess water from them.

Now you’re ready to layer:

Spread a little sauce at the bottom of the casserole-dish

Layer with noodles—depending on the size of the dish will depend on how many noodles you will need, but typically three-four for each layer, with a total of three layers.

Layer of meat sauce

½ of the vegetable filling

A handful or two shredded cheese

Noodles

Meat sauce

The other half of vegetable filling

The cottage cheese mixture spread over it in full

Handful or two of shredded cheese

Noodles

The remaining sauce

The remaining shredded cheese—enough to completely cover the sauce. If there isn’t enough, grate a bit more.

Top with parmesan cheese, and a sprinkling of parsley and oregano.

Bake at 350F for 45 minutes.


Serve with garlic bread


Garlic Bread

1 loaf of French bread or a baguette


Ingredients for Garlic spread:

2 ½ tablespoons of butter

1 tablespoon garlic powder or garlic salt (adjust to suit your tastes)

1 finely minced clove of garlic

¼ teaspoon oregano (optional)

1/2 teaspoon parsley


Directions:

Slice the bread lengthways, and then into pieces OR slice the full loaf on an angle into pieces.

Mix until smooth.

Spread over the bread and bake for 20 minutes at 390F.


***Bake the lasagna at 350F for 30 minutes, then turn up the oven to 390F and bake with the garlic bread, so they will be ready at the same time.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

SneakPeekWednesday; Demonic Pandemonium, Excerpt Two


The Cornwall Coven, Book Three; Demonic Pandemonium

Kayden McLeod

http://www.kaydenmcleod.com/

Publication Date:

January 29th 2010

Genre:

Erotic Paranormal Romance (Vampires)

Sub-Genre:

Horror

Publisher:

Silver Publishing

Website:

http://silverpublishing.info/

Heat-Rating:

Four Flames—Fiery

Tagline:

Sex, blood and rock and roll

Summary:

Pandora is a half-demon, alone in the world and good as abandoned, with a mother who barely tolerates her and a father who is unable to be with her nearly often enough for her tastes. She keeps to herself, and tries not to associate with others often, lest they discover her secret—until she meets Kevlar Cornwall. The two collide in ignorance of one another, but the sexual-attraction is indisputable and cannot be ignored, growing more profound with every passing moment. It blinds them to the lurking danger hiding just around the corner, out to end both their lives and everyone either of them have ever known or loved.

Excerpt Two (RATED: PG):

*Oh! I love this.* Kelly turned abruptly to walk up to a game. With this one, well over a hundred balloons stuck to a sheet of particleboard, and you threw darts as them to win. When she paid the man for five, the men groaned. It was obviously not a favourite past time for them.

*This is so easy, it’s almost unfair.* Matthew laughed.

*Yes, it is.* Marcus sighed.

*Have you ever played this game?* Kev’s hand pressed on my back, standing closer.

*Of course, have you?* I countered, and tried not to stutter when he leaned into me.

*You have to slow your heart-rate down. It’s jumping all over the place.*

*You can hear that?*

*I have exceptional hearing,* Kev said. *So, are you any good at this game? I have played it a lot, which by the way, Ialways win.*

*Always?* I rolled my eyes at the obvious maleness of this moment.

Marcus snickered behind us. When his hand flicked, he threw a perfect arch that popped the balloon in a sudden burst. He made it look too easy.

*Oh, yes,* Kev purred with self-satisfaction. For some obscure reason I liked the sound of it. The overconfidence that drove me nuts in others, intrigued me in him. *Always.*

I even felt amused, and possibly even a tiny bit challenged. Not to outdo him really—oh no, I already knew I could do that. I wasn’t a girl who needed to prove herself. Just screw with him.

*Then throw, Kev. Let’s watch you win.* I stepped well inside of his personal space.

Yet the closer I got, the more pronounced his affect on me became. I’d stopped, inadvertently allowing my breast to brush his arm. But I didn’t take much notice of it. My attention was all for him.

*Do you really believe that, Kevlar?* I asked in a breathy voice, just as his arm snapped back. His eyes widened dramatically, and I knew before he’d even finished the movement that it would’ve been a perfect throw. Had I not interfered.

The dart left his finger…

And he missed. It was nice to know the relentless attraction went both ways, and not just on my side.

Marcus stared at the misplaced dart and then back at me, absolutely stupefied. I believed if he continued for long, his face would stay like that permanently.

*I missed,* Kev said, appalled with himself.

And it was freakin’ awesome!

Kelly laughed again, a light tinkling of sound pleasant to the ears; purity not heard often outside of small, not-yet-jaded children.

*It would certainly appear so.* Marcus’ expression became unreadable. The way he watched me was indescribable, like he had just realized something huge about me. And I had no idea what it was.

*Oh, big deal,* Kelly muttered to him. *So, she’s hard to read. Some people are just like that.*

I had the feeling she tried to smooth something over. What was their problem? Did the big he-man get upset when he lost?

Too bad.

I laughed out loud, not able to help myself this time. There must be some pretty solid ground to Kev’s ego, if his friend’s appearances testified to anything.

*Umm, sorry,* I replied, sharing a mischievous glance with Kelly. But the men just looked at us like we had lost our minds. Bah! This was just too much fun.

*Okay, maybe we shouldn’t play this game anymore.* She turned, and I followed her until we burst back out into the sunlight. *Do you drink beer?*

*Yes,* I answered, startled by the abrupt change in topic.

*Beer garden, then?*

*Lead the way.*


Monday, November 22, 2010

RecipeMonday: Apple Cinnamon Bread

Apple and Cinnamon Swirl Bread


Ingredients:


5 1/2-6 cups all-purpose flour

1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast

1 cup milk

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

3 tablespoons butter

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

1 cup shredded apple

1 1/2 cups finely chopped peeled apples

1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 tablespoons butter, softened

1 slightly beaten egg white

1 tablespoon water

coarse sugar

Directions:


1. In a large mixing bowl combine 2 cups of the flour and the yeast; set aside.


2. In a saucepan heat and stir milk, granulated sugar, the 3 tablespoons butter, and the salt until warm (120° to 130°) and until butter almost melts.

3. Add milk mixture to dry mixture along with eggs.

4. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping side of bowl constantly.

5. Then beat on high speed 3 minutes.

6. Stir in shredded apple.

7. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much remaining flour as you can.

8. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.

9. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic (6 to 8 minutes total).

10. Shape into a ball. Place in lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface.

11. Cover; let rise in a warm place until double (about 1 hour. Punch dough down.

12. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide in half Cover; let rest 10 minutes.

13. Lightly grease two 8x4x2- or 9x5x3-inch loaf pans.

14. Meanwhile, for filling, in a medium mixing bowl combine chopped apple, nuts, brown sugar, and cinnamon; set aside.

15.Roll half of the dough to a 14x9-inch rectangle. Spread with 1 tablespoon of the softened butter; sprinkle with half of the filling.

16. Beginning at both short ends, roll each end up, jelly-roll style, to center.

17. Place loaf, rolled side up, in a prepared loaf pan. For second loaf, repeat with remaining dough, remaining butter, and remaining filling.

18. Cover, let rise until almost double in size (about 30 minutes).

19. Stir together egg white and water. Brush egg white mixture over tops of loaves; sprinkle with coarse sugar.

20. Bake in a 375° oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until bread sounds hollow when you tap tops (if necessary, loosely cover with foil for the last 15 minutes of baking to prevent overbrowning).

21. Immediately remove from pans. Cool on wire racks.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

SneakPeakWednesday; The Cornwall Coven, Book Three, Demonic Pandemonium, Coming Soon

The Cornwall Coven, Book Three; Demonic Pandemonium

Kayden McLeod

http://www.kaydenmcleod.com/

Publication Date: January 29th 2010

Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance (Vampires)

Sub-Genre: Horror

Publisher: Silver Publishing

Website:http://silverpublishing.info/

Heat-Rating: Four Flames—Fiery

Tagline:

Sex, blood and rock and roll

Summary:

Pandora is a half-demon, alone in the world and good as abandoned, with a mother who barely tolerates her and a father who is unable to be with her nearly often enough for her tastes. She keeps to herself, and tries not to associate with others often, lest they discover her secret—until she meets Kevlar Cornwall. The two collide in ignorance of one another, but the sexual-attraction is indisputable and cannot be ignored, growing more profound with every passing moment. It blinds them to the lurking danger hiding just around the corner, out to end both their lives and everyone either of them have ever known or loved.

Excerpt One (RATED: PG)

Prologue

There are many types of people in this world.

And I have no idea what type I would be classified under. I walk through life always unsure of my next move and how it would affect others. Because everything I did rippled outward and long ago realized I had to limit my association with the “outside world”, relying on no one but myself.

I couldn’t rely on my family, friends or enemies for guidance of any sort; forever alone and doomed to always be. Such was the case with my kind—though I wouldn’t know, since I didn’t associate with them either.

What am I? A demon.

Hell, I couldn’t even fit into that category. I was half-mortal, a thing cursed to be complicated and dangerous—even to myself. I couldn’t do normal things, normal people did, mostly since all it would take is one wrong word or action, and all of a sudden I would turn into a monster that made everybody else quake in fear. A Frankenstein, but of a different sort.

And I was the only one on earth.

I had a human mother who hated me, and a demon father who I rarely saw or talked to. Creatures of the lower realms weren’t allowed on this plane without a direct access pass. And even then, it was sketchy.

So what was life like for me? Shit. Absolute uselessness.

You’d think it would be enough to drive a person just a little batty. But no. There’s more.

I was an author by profession. I had an agent, an excellent career—or I’d had anyways. It isn’t as good as it sounds.

Within the past few days, I’d realized my chosen path in life wasn’t as great as I’d cracked it up to be. My agent, Sam, proved to be ripping me off; stealing my work right from under my nose.

The most important book of my existent too boot. Well, to me anyway. The novel would be published, but it sure as fuck wasn’t by me. Sam Poetize was an underhanded slime-ball who had worked on my behalf since the beginning of my writing days. He made me believe in him for believing in me. But that came to an end.

Trusting him was one of the biggest mistakes I could’ve made.

One of; but definitely not the worst.

Oh no, that would be reserved for the day I’d been born, if you asked my mother, Lillian.

I lay in bed, staring at the ceiling while I thought of this, when the radio came on instead of an alarm clock, at exactly six-forty am. Loud noises hurt my overly sensitive ears.

Nickelback’s Burn It To The Ground blared through the speaker.

When it ended, one of the disk-jockeys of the Jeff O-Neil Morning Show, Charis’ voice filled the room. The program was a favourite of mine with their causal banter and favoured rock; but not the deep concern that weighed her careful words.

"It continued last night," Charis began. "The murder count is now up to ten."

"Ten?" Jeff repeated.

"The police are cautioning the people of Vancouver to be on the look out, and to report anything suspicious."

"What did they find this time?" Scotty inquired.

"The witnesses on scene were reported saying a severed arm was found in one part of an alley, and a leg on the other side of Hornby Street. No weapon was found or determined."

I sat up in bed, listening closely. I lived only a few blocks from there.

This would cause hysteria. Pandemonium. Something deep inside stirred at the thought of so many terrified people. I shivered, and then thrust aside the part of me that relished the distinct possibility. My human part was appalled, and since I resided on earth and not—well not on earth, that would be the emotion I stuck with.

I’d seen this as nothing more than a serial killer the news named him—or her.

Yet these murders held a far greater meaning in relation to me, and the lives surrounding mine. I just didn’t know it then.

Perhaps if I’d been more cautious and aware of my surroundings, the signs of my own demise would have shown themselves to me before it was too late.

But that was wrong.

It had been too late for a long time already.


Monday, November 15, 2010

RecipeMonday: Chocolate Cherry Cake with Rum Ganache

Chocolate Cherry Cake with Rum Ganache

Ingredients:

- 1 (18.5 ounce) package chocolate cake mix

- 1 cup all-purpose flour

- 1/2 cup sugar

- 2 (.23 ounce) packages unsweetened lemonade-flavored drink mix

- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

- 1/2 cup cooking oil

- 4 eggs

- 1 (21 ounce) can sherry pie filling

- 1 (8 ounce) carton dairy sour cream

- 2 teaspoons almond extract

- 1 (4 ounce) bar sweet baking chocolate, chopped

- 1 cup whipping cream

- 9 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped

- 2 tablespoons dark rum

Directions:

- Preheat oven to 350F.

- Grease and flour a 10-inch fluted tube pan; set aside.

- In a large bowl stir together cake mix, flour, sugar, drink mix, baking powder and soda.

- Add oil, eggs, cherry pie filling, sour cream and almond extract. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 2 minutes (batter will be stiff). Fold in chopped sweet chocolate.

- Spoon into prepared pan. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

- Cool in pan on wire rack for 20 minutes.

- Loosen sides and remove from pan. Cool completely.

- For ganache, in a small saucepan heat cream just to boiling. In a medium bowl pour hot cream over bittersweet chocolate; let stand 5 minutes. Stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth; stir in rum.

- Place bowl with chocolate in a bowl of ice water and let stand about 20 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.

- Transfer cake to serving plate. Spread ganache over cake. Let stand 1 hour before serving to set up.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cindy Jack's Leap Releases Today!

Leap

Cindy Jacks

Author website:

http://cindyjacks.com/

Buy-link:

http://www.jasminejade.com/ps-8822-50-leap.aspx

Blurb:

Just when Lila has resigned herself to the fact the most exciting chapters of her life are over, a blast from the past walks into her bakery. Six feet of gorgeousness named Gavin drops by as she’s closing up shop. They were once high-school sweethearts and it’s been more than twenty-five years since they’ve seen each other, but time hasn’t diminished the sweet heat between them. Soon enough the sparks—and the frosting—begin to fly.

As they rediscover each other’s bodies, it’s clear Gavin’s no longer a boy as he shows Lila the man and skillful lover he’s become. Though Lila knows this whirlwind romp could be an act of insanity, his touch unleashes the sensual woman she’s forgotten she could be. And she thinks—maybe—she has one more leap in her.

An Excerpt From: LEAP

Copyright © CINDY JACKS, 2010

All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.

Gavin followed her through the swinging door to the back. With a low whistle, he looked around the kitchen and asked, “Is this place all yours?”

“All mine.”

She walked over to the Purposeless Cake and stared down at it. Pulling a box from beneath the worktable, she started to put it away, but then though better of it.

“Are you hungry?” asked Lila.

“I could eat.”

“Good.” She pulled a knife from a drawer, cut slabs of cake and served them up on heavy-duty ceramic plates. Gavin grabbed two stainless-steel forks from a gray plastic silverware tub to his right.

She handed him his plate.

“This looks great,” he said.

“Taste it.”

He shoveled a bite into his mouth and moaned. “Oh my God. This is— Damn.”

Lila grinned. “Thanks.” She took a bite of cake. “Not bad, if I do say so myself.”

Pulling up two barstools, she sat and motioned for him to do the same. Lila studied him as he moved to take a seat. Taller, broader. Gavin had become fully a man. Though he was clean-shaven, she wondered what he’d look like with a beard. Could he grow one now? His dark hair led to about an inch or so of well-filled-out sideburns. Yeah, she was sure he could grow out his facial hair and he’d look pretty damn good if he did. Not that he didn’t look great as he was. The cropped, clean-cut look worked for him. A whisper of gray touched each of his temples and he wore that well too.

Her gaze wandered down his frame. No excess flesh or jutting bone. His tight musculature shifted his frame with ease. Clearly he took care of himself, worked out often. A picture of him shirtless in some imaginary gym, sweat dripping down a cut chest and abdomen, appeared in her mind’s eye. She blinked away the thought, trying to focus on his words and ignore the pounding of her heart. Her hand strayed to her matronly bun and the bobby pins holding it in place. She picked them out of her hair, one by one, and shook out her shoulder-length tresses.

“Mom said you’ve been at this location for the past ten years. I can see why,” said Gavin.

She cleared her throat. “Jack helped me set it up after we got divorced.”

“After?”

“It was a pretty amicable split…as divorces go.”

“My ex, Irene, and I went through a pretty rough one a couple years ago.”

“I’m sorry to hear that.”

He took another bite of cake. “It’s all good now.”

Lila worked on her piece for a few minutes in comfortable silence and then asked, “Why did you come here tonight, Gavin?”

He glanced around the room and gave a little shake of his head. “To see you.”

“I get that. I mean what were you expecting from me?”

He rubbed his hand on the front of his jeans. “No expectations. It’s—it’s just good to be back. You’re part of my memories of home. I guess. No, I mean you are. Definitely.” He grunted and rolled his eyes. “I’ll stop rambling now.”

She let out an amused huff under her breath. “You’re fine.”

She slid her fork over her plate and scraped up the last of the frosting and crumbs. Her tongue darted over the fork tines and licked them clean.

Gavin reached out his hand. “You got a little chocolate…”

He brushed his thumb over her bottom lip. She let her tongue graze the tip of it. Shocked by her own audacity, she shied away from his touch but he cupped her face in one hand.

Eyelids lowered, Gavin leaned in. Dark lashes rested against his cheek. Warm lips skimmed across hers. The hand under her jaw slipped beneath her hair and cradled her neck. Lila’s body relaxed into the kiss, sliding her tongue over his. For a moment she lost herself in the scent and the taste of him—chocolate richness and the citrus undertones of his cologne, but all too soon, she remembered the shards of glass lodged in her heart. Pain at the memory of Alan’s departure stabbed at her.

“Maybe we shouldn’t be doing this,” she murmured.

“Maybe not.” He gave her a quick, soft kiss and then a longer, more urgent one.

Shouldn’t be doing this, Lila thought. A list of reasons she should rebuff his advances scrolled through her mind. She was still getting over Alan. She hadn’t seen Gavin in over twenty-five years. Jesus Christ, a quarter century. Nothing good ever came from rushing into sex. But who said they had to go that far? Well, she did want to fuck him. No denying that. But the last thing she needed was…was…?

The feel of his heated mouth against hers overrode her common sense. Oh, to hell with it. Why not?

****

Thank you for hosting me today, Kayden. And thanks to the visitors for dropping by and reading about my new release, Leap, available now at Ellora's Cave. Don't forget to leave a comment. One lucky commenter will be chosen at random to receive an e-book copy of Leap!

~Cindy

Friend me on Facebook!

http://www.facebook.com/author.cindy.jacks


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

SneakPeekWednesday; A Cornwall Christmas, Excerpt Two


Title:

A Cornwall Christmas—Christmas Anthology

Proceeds Go To:

Armed Forces Children’s Education Fund Inc

Kayden McLeod

http://www.kaydenmcleod.com/

Publication Date:

November 27th 2010

Genre:

Paranormal Romance (Vampires, PG)

Publisher:

Mojocastle Press

Website:

http://www.mojocastle.com/


Tagline:

A Christmas the Vancouver vampires will never forget

Summary:

Even vampires celebrate the holidays. Marcus and Kelly wake up Christmas morning with their own extraordinary presents for the other, one of them being blowing up of the kitchen. In an effort to appear more human, the Cornwalls plan an extravagant dinner, with all the trimmings and more. Differences are put aside; the Council and Covens come together to show that this time of year is only for good tidings.

Excerpt Two (Rated PG):

“I think Corrine would kick your butt if you have her house smelling like that.” I sighed.

“Damn right.” Max emerged from the crowd of smiling faces with Holly and Ryder right behind him. “And do not make her mad this joyest joyous of days, or she will hit me, which is never a good plan.” He glowered, but amusement still shone in his brown eyes. “She is thrilled with trying out this method of labour-intensive cooking. She really loved stuffing that turkey. Mind you, she got sort of…violent with it.”

“This is Cor we are talking about. Somehow, she makes everything violent,” Marcus responded.

“What did she do to it?” I asked curiously, and Sara looked utterly devious.

“Well she put bread up its, well, you know…Why would someone do that? The poor animal has to die to feed us, and it still has to get molested and have trimmings shove up its rear. It’s just wrong, I tell you.” Max’s disgust and astonishment made me laugh.

“That is how they are supposed to do it.”

Oh yea, that helped the conversation not at all.

“Are you serious? I am not eating stuffing ever again,” Marcus muttered.

“You liked it just fine before you knew what was done to it,” I reminded him. “I should go help the brave soul who has to cook all these picky people dinner. She was kind enough to do it, and I am sure she is working very hard.”

Max laughed. “Ahh, such is my beautiful and multi-talented mate.”

“She is mad at you, isn’t she? It’s the only time you praise her.” Marcus grinned. He would know, having a similar temperament to the man who led him.

“I screwed up the ‘mashed potatoes’ or so she calls them. I have seen them in the occasional restaurant, but never tried to make or eat them. Personally, I believe they are a lot of useless work.”

“How’d you mess up that?” My interest peaked. The entire recipe was in the name!

Sara giggled unexpectedly, and I waited for her to finish and explain. “He decided the masher didn’t work fast enough for him. So Max put them on the floor and stomped on them with his shoe.” Sara rolled her eyes. “Then Corrine kicked him out and started doing everything with Catalym’s help, but that was before she went to go get Matthew. After that, he was the final ‘helper’, not the first.”

“Who else tried?” I tried not to groan when three-quarters of the clan held up their hand to signify Corrine’s thoroughly unlucky night. “And how many were kicked out for doing this sort of things?” Not a hand went down, Sara being the proudest among them, who raised hers higher.

I wasn’t even going to ask about that one, willing to bet money Sara had been “undomesticated” on purpose, just to get out of the duty.

“Oh. That is a lot of wrong things. I am going to go see if she needs some help,” I muttered.