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Archive for August, 2013

Recipe: Cider Crumble Slice

Cider Crumble Slice

 

This recipe comes from High Tea, recipes with a sense of occasion.

Ingredients:

20 grams butter (3/4 oz)

1 1/2 tablespoons of golden syrup or light treacle

150 ml apple cider (alcoholic) (5 fl oz)

250 grams (2 cups) self-raising flour

pinch of ground ginger

45 grams (1/4 cup) brown sugar

75 grams (2 1/2 oz) chopped and pitted dates

75 grams (3/4 cup) walnuts chopped

1 egg

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 170C (325F)

2. Grease a 20 x 30 cm (8 x 12 inch) baking tin. I use baking paper, which is much quicker.

3. Melt the butter and golden syrup in a saucepan. Remove from the heat and add the cider.

4. Sift the flour and ginger into a bowl. Stir in the sugar, dates and walnuts.

5. Beat the egg and add along with the butter mixture and spoon into your tin. Smooth out.

Topping:

1 large granny smith apple

40 grams (1 1/2 oz) butter

2 1/2 tablespoons of caster sugar (fine sugar)

60 grams (1/2 cup) plain flour

75 grams (3/4 cup) chopped walnuts

Method:

1. Peel and core the apple and slice thinly.

2. Melt the butter.

3. Add the butter to the sugar, flour, apple and walnuts and combine well.

4. Spread over the uncooked base.

5. Bake for 30 minutes until golden. Cool in the tin, cut into pieces and serve.

Shelley’s Notes:

1. This was delicious and would be nice served hot with a little yoghurt or cream for dessert, but it was also great with a cup of tea.

2. I’ll be making this one again since both hubby and I enjoyed it very much.

The King of Threadneedle Street

I bring you a historical with a very interesting title today—The King of Threadneedle Street. It was the title that grabbed my attention and made me look closer. Please welcome, Moriah Densley, and make sure you leave a comment to go into the draw to win some beautiful jewelry.

BBT The King of Threadneedle Street Banner copy

King of Threadneedle StreetTHE KING OF THREADNEEDLE STREET

By

Moriah Densley

BLURB:

He owns three shipping companies, a diamond mine, and his own castle.
He knows Portuguese, Hindu, Mandarin and Morse code.
His assets net thirteen million.

Lord Preston wants the one thing money can’t buy…

Andrew Tilmore, Lord Preston, the financial prodigy dubbed “The King of Threadneedle Street” wants the one prize out of reach: his childhood sweetheart. The papers can waste a sea of ink scandalizing over his lavender-eyed Alysia; so what if she is the daughter of his father’s mistress?

Alysia Villier learned the craft of the courtesan from her infamous mother―by osmosis apparently. A gifted artist who almost won the Prix de Rome, Alysia is not interested in following in her mother’s footsteps, since Andrew ruined her for any other man. But with her legal guardian—Andrew’s father―in control of her inheritance, she has little choice in the matter.

Keeping Alysia out of trouble and away from eager suitors becomes a cross-continental quest for Andrew. Not his old-fashioned family, the disapproval of the ton, nor even Alysia’s dedication to duty and propriety will stop him. Playing newspapers and investors like pawns, tumbling world markets, inciting riots… has he gone too far?

EXCERPT: Ballroom scene

After being threatened with ruin by Andrew Tilmore Lord Preston’s parents, Alysia Villier runs away to Paris. With the help of people she thinks are her friends, she makes a living as a painter and an artist’s model. The same night she learns she’s in danger, her knight in shining armor comes to the rescue…

Perhaps the people around her were speaking; she couldn’t say, for she was momentarily stunned and not sure why. Then she heard the voice again. A British, bass voice. “Excuse me, pardon.”

Was it her imagination? She shook her head.

Evigny and Ramsgate were pushed aside, and there stood Andrew, a head taller than the others and gloriously angry. Her heart stalled then kicked. She couldn’t breathe.

He gave her a low, formal bow. Pressed a slow kiss on the back of her gloved hand before turning it to press the palm to his face. Closed his eyes and inhaled deeply at her wrist. Grazed his nose along the inside of her forearm, as though hundreds of eyes were not observing.

One of the men nearby, probably Ramsgate, scoffed, “And without an introduction! Such presumption! Come now, who is—”

“We have met,” Andrew took her glass, and for the second time that evening, Leduc found himself holding it while another man cut in.

“Andrew.” Her voice caught, and her throat felt swollen. A dozen gasps sounded around her, seeming to echo.

She became aware of a chorus of lowered voices. “That is Lord Preston!” or jealously, “How does he know Miss Villier?” said as though her name meant horse manure.

“Lord Preston, The King of Threadneedle Street.”

“Lord Preston, youngest peer to sit in the House of Lords.”

All hail Lord Preston, the demi-god. Who should not be here.

She was suddenly conscious of how she must look to him, no longer the plump, modest country maiden to whom he had bid farewell over a year before. After a year of Madame Desmarais’ strict diet of vegetable juices, sprouts, and deprivation of sweets, Alysia was a noticeable one or two stone lighter. She thought she was an inch taller, as well.

But that wasn’t mortifying. Alysia resisted the urge to cover herself with her fan. She didn’t want him to see the pleated silver bodice in translucent gossamer, wasp-waist corset and low Parisian décolleté. Wisps of gossamer—a poor excuse for sleeves—sat low on her arms, exposing her shoulders and half her back. The cosmetics, the exotic perfume, her hair coiffed in semi-dishabille topped with jeweled combs…

She must truly look a harlot to him. Did he think so? He was certainly staring.

Ignoring the protests of her so-called admirers, he led her to the dance floor just in time for the next waltz, oblivious to her wooden movements. He pulled their dance position completely closed. Pressed against him from shoulder to knee — oh, the shock! His thighs rubbed hers, leading the steps as he had over a year before at his sister’s wedding. It seemed ages ago.

Constrained in the corset, she couldn’t draw a clear breath. If the dizziness grew worse, she would faint in his arms. At least his shoulder blocked her view of the room. Alysia had no desire to survey all the curious and accusing glares she knew were aimed at her.

Oh, why did Andrew have to appear this evening? She felt like an opium addict locked in a closet saturated with the scent, smoke, and juice. Tentatively his fingers moved over the exposed skin of her back, across her shoulders, blazing a sensation strangely like fire and ice together. His head turned a little and rested against hers. He hummed softly in her ear as though it was perfectly ordinary that they should be waltzing at a ball in Paris on a random autumn evening.

CONTEST: Go into a draw to win a genuine Victorian-style pearl jewelry set inspired by the book, including necklace, bracelet, and earrings. To receive more chances of winning follow the rest of Moriah’s The King of Threadneedle Street tour.

MEDIA KIT Reader Prize KTS_BlogTourPrizeJewelry_READER

AUTHOR INFORMATION:Moriah Densley

Moriah Densley sees nothing odd at all about keeping both a violin case and a range bag stuffed with pistols in the back seat of her car. They hold up the stack of books in the middle, of course. She enjoys writing about Victorians, assassins, and geeks. Her muses are summoned by the smell of chocolate, usually at odd hours of the night. By day her alter ego is your friendly neighborhood music teacher. She lives in Las Vegas with her husband and four children. Published in historical and paranormal romance, Moriah has a Master’s degree in music, is a 2012 RWA Golden Heart finalist, 2012 National Reader’s Choice Award “Best First Book” finalist, and 2012 National Reader’s Choice Award finalist in historical romance. She loves hearing from readers!

LINKS

GIVEAWAY LINK (picture of Victorian-style jewelry set + entry info):

http://moriahdensley.com/2013/05/26/win-this-victorian-pearl-jewelry-set/

Website + blog: http://moriahdensley.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MoriahDensley

Twitter: http://twitter.com/moriahdensley

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/moriahdensley/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17826397-the-king-of-threadneedle-street

Available now in e-book:

Astraea Press

Amazon

B&N

Smashwords

A Writer’s Life – The Bottom Line

The Bottom Line, the first book in my Love and Friendship series is out a blog tour this week, and Past Regrets, the second book in the series is due out on 10 September.

Today I’m visiting:

The-Bottom-Line-Banner-AUTHORS-FB

Sky Purington at A Writer’s Mind – interview

Fierce Romance Author Group – interview

Booker Like A Hooker – review

I bet you can’t guess what the least glamorous thing I do every day is…find the answer in the Fierce Romance interview!

Earthquakes and Art Deco!

I’m visiting Heart-Shaped Glasses where I’m talking about earthquakes among other things. Heart-Shaped Glasses has a travel theme this month and there are lots of excellent posts to check out.

All The Better To Eat You With!

I’m visiting Mychael Black today and talking about sharp teeth – all the better to eat you with!

Do You Know Your Kiwis?

I’ve visiting The Whole Shebang Site today and talking about kiwis. Do you know your kiwis? Check out my post to see…

Recipe: Bread Made in Crockpot

Firstly, I’m visiting out and about on the web today:

I’m with Taige Crenshaw and have a post and contest.

I have an interview and contest with Kate Hill.

And I have a writer craft post over at Savvy Authors.

During the weekend I experimented with two different recipes. There was the Ginger Oat Slice, which I posted yesterday, and today I’m posting the recipe for Bread made in a crockpot. This recipe came from Robyn Martin Bakes recipe book.

Crock Pot Bread

Ingredients:

15 grams dried yeast (1/2 ounce)

4 teaspoons sugar

2 1/2 cups warm water

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups wholemeal flour

4 cups bread making flour

Instructions:

1. Place the yeast in a small bowl with 1/2 teaspoon of the sugar. Add 1/4 of a cup of the warm water and leave for around five minutes until it looks frothy.

2. Place flour and salt plus remaining sugar in a bowl. Add the rest of the water plus the yeast mixture to the bowl and combine well.

3. Turn out onto a floured bowl and knead the dough until it’s smooth and elastic. Add more flour as necessary.

4. Oil your crock pot/slow cooker bowl and switch your crock pot onto high.

5. Place the dough into the crockpot and cook on high for two hours. The bread is cooked when it gives a hollow sound when tapped.

6. Cool on a wire rack.

Shelley’s notes:

1. I make bread several times a week and didn’t follow the instructions exactly.

2. After the initial kneading stage, I let my bread rest a bit in a warm place until it had risen.

3. Once it had risen, I punched it down and shaped it. At this stage I plopped it into my crock pot to cook.

4. I had to cook my bread for a bit longer than what the recipe said. I suspect that some crock pots are hotter than others.

5. I also turned my bread over and cooked the top for about ten minutes before I took it out to cool on a wire rack.

6. The final result was soft and yummy. I’ll definitely make this recipe again. I’ll probably add sunflower or pumpkin seeds and experiment with different herbs and flour.

Crock Pot Bread cut

Do you use your crock pot much?

Recipe: Ginger Oat Slice

Ginger Oat Slice

This is a new to me recipe from Robyn Martin’s book called Bake.

Ingredients:

150 grams butter (5 oz)

1/4 cup golden syrup

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup coconut

1 1/2 cups wholegrain oats (that’s oatmeal to Americans)

1/2 cup wholemeal flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons ground ginger

Method:

1. Melt the butter, golden syrup and sugar in a saucepan until the butter is melted.

2. Place the coconut, oats, flour, baking powder and ginger in a bowl and add the butter mixture.

3. Combine well.

4. Line a 20 x 30 cm tin with baking paper then press mixture into the tin.

5. Bake at 180C/350F for 20 minutes or until golden.

6. Mark into squares while still warm.

Shelley’s Notes:

1. My final result looked nothing like the picture in the recipe book. It tasted great, but I’m at a loss to explain the difference.

2. The square tasted good, but when I make it again, I think I’ll reduce the sugar a little. It was quite sweet.

3. I put a little lemon icing (frosting) on top – a sort of a drizzle – and that was a nice combination.

Have you tried any new recipes recently?

Thirteen 18th Century English Resource Books

Thursday Thirteen

I’m busy researching in preparation to write a new historical romance series. My chosen time period is 18th century England, and here is a list of my current reading.

Thirteen Non-Fiction Books on English History

1. Great Houses of London by James Stourton, Publisher Frances Lincoln Limited

A book featuring some of the great houses in London with lots of great photos.

2. Georgian House Style Handbook by Ingrid Cranfield, Publisher David & Charles

Features the different interiors and furnishing of a Georgian building. Also a little about architects and the styles of house.

3. London in the Eighteenth Century by Jerry White, Publisher The Bodley Head.

This book is full of great info on the people, the city, work in the city and culture.

4. The London Square by Todd Longstaffe-Gowan, Publisher Yale University Press

A history of residential squares in London.

5. The Golden Age of Flowers by Celia Fisher, Publisher The British Library

Botanical illustration in the age of discovery 1600 – 1800

6. How to Create the Perfect Wife by Wendy Moore, Publisher Weidenfeld & Nicolson

Georgian Britain’s most ineligible bachelor and his quest to cultivate the ideal woman.

7. Mid-Georgian Britain by Jacqueline Riding, Publisher Shire Living Histories

How we worked, played and lived.

8. Vauxhall Gardens by David Coke & Alan Borg, Publisher Yale University Press

A history of Vauxhall Gardens

9. The Secret History of Georgian London by Dan Cruickshank

How the wages of sin shaped the city.

10. Walking Jane Austen’s London by Louise Allen

A guide to nine walks that Jane Austen enjoyed.

11. Georgian London: Into the Streets by Lucy Inglis

A guide to 18th century London.

12. The Amorous Antics of Old England by Nigel Cawthorne, Publisher Portrait

All sorts of interesting snippets on courting.

13. Daily Life in 18th Century England by Kirstin Olsen, Publisher Greenwood Press

A book full of social history details.

Are you a big non-fiction reader? If so, what is your chosen topic?

Tips for a Successful Goodreads Giveaway

I’m visiting Cindy Carroll’s writer blog today—Guelph Write Now. My post is about organizing a Goodreads giveaway, and I have a few tips for those of you who are interested in this type of author promotion.

While you’re there make sure you take the opportunity to enter my current Goodreads giveaway to win a print copy of The Bottom Line.



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