December 11th, 2017
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Ex-NFL star + snarky single mom = a touchdown of a holiday romance


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The vampires are coming... and this time, the lights won't stop them.


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The owner of a delightful Southern café tastes the sharp sting of suspicion in this delectable comfort food mystery...


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This holiday season, love is on the menu.


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A Spartan heart can conquer anything, even myths, magic, and monsters.


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There’s nothing like a firefighting cowboy to keep you toasty warm this Christmas...


December brings fabulous reads!



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Holiday Potluck

Wishing you and yours the best this holiday season!

Recipes | Contests

Sharon Buchbinder | Love and Latkes!

Sharon Buchbinder

Latkes, in case you don’t know, are potato pancakes, fried in oil. The holiday celebrates the Maccabees (the Hebrew word for “hammer”) victory over the Greeks who wanted the Jews to reject their one G-d and worship pagan gods. When the Jews reclaimed the Temple, they found only enough uncontaminated oil to light the menorah for one night. Instead, the oil lasted for eight nights, a miracle. On each of the eight nights of Hanukkah, we light candles to commemorate this miracle. We also cook in oil to remember the special oil in the lamp. Some families make donuts. We make latkes.

Everyone’s family has a different recipe. Now I’m seeing recipes for latkes with jalapeno peppers! My mother-in-law, may she rest in peace, would not approve. Herewith, I share with you two of my mother-in-law’s recipes for latkes.

Latkes

Latkes

(Serves small army, but remember you want leftovers!)

  • 5 pound bag of white potatoes
  • 2 large sweet onions
  • 1 large container of egg substitute
  • Black pepper
  • Olive oil for cooking (lots—don’t skimp or the latkes will stick!)
  • Sour cream
  • Applesauce

Using food processor or hand grater, grate onions and set aside in large bowl. (You will cry.) Drain onions and pat with paper towels. They make a lot of water!

Peel potatoes and place in large bowl or pot of salted water to prevent them from turning colors.

Cut potatoes into chunks and grate in food processor or by hand. (Oy! That’s a lot of work. Sure you can’t borrow a food processor from someone?)

Mix onions, potatoes, and egg substitute until all potatoes and onions are covered well with egg. You probably won’t need the entire container. Throw in black pepper to your taste.

Heat olive oil in frying pan. You want it hot, not smoking, but hot.

Place large spoons full of latke mix in pan and turn when golden brown (you will see it on turn color on the edges).

Serve latkes hot with a generous dollop of sour cream and/or applesauce.

I hope you enjoy the recipe. More importantly, I hope you enjoy your time with your families and the wonderful memories you make with them during whatever holiday you celebrate.

Happy healthy holidays to all!

LEGACY OF EVIL by Sharon Buchbinder

Hotel LaBelle #2

Legacy of
Evil

When a wild mustang is shot in Montana, renowned horse whisperer and telepath, Emma Horserider, is called in to calm the herd and find out what happened. Once on scene she is almost killed by a bullet-spewing drone, and calls her black ops brother for back-up.

Emma's help roars into her life covered in tattoos and riding a Harley. Remote viewer Bronco Winchester takes the assignment because he is ordered to, but he wonders what type of assistance, his boss's sister needs. That is until he sees Emma, a valiant Warrior Woman proud of her Crow heritage.

Posing as a married couple, Emma and Bronco go undercover to infiltrate and stop a hate group. Both are anxious enough without the now growing attachment they feel for one another. When the lives of many are on the line, they are not sure if they will live or die—let alone have a chance at love.

Romance Western | Romance Paranormal [The Wild Rose Press, On Sale: October 13, 2017, e-Book, ISBN: 2940158562303 / eISBN: 9781509217236]

Sweet chocolate drinks and pretzels from Dani Pettrey

Dani Pettrey

I'd chose Gage's Peppermint Mocha because I love peppermint, coffee, chocolate and the very handsome Gage McKenna from my Alaskan Courage series novel—STRANDED.

Gage is quite the chef and loves to mix up flavors and this drink is layered with plenty of yummy warmth for a cold, winter day. My family and I love to sip holiday drinks like these sitting by the fire or in front of our lit Christmas tree and just soak in the season, and peppermint Christmas just go together perfectly.

Gage Peppermint Mocha from Dani Pettrey

Try it with some Christmas cookies or even a Pettrey Family Favorite like our Holiday pretzels, which I've included as well. This tradition started when our kiddos were young and they'd have a blast squishing the M&Ms into the melting Hershey Kiss as they came out of the oven. Really gets you in the festive, Christmas mood. Hope you enjoy, and Merry Christmas!

STRANDED by Dani Pettrey

Alaskan Courage #3

Stranded

Eager Fans Await Bestselling Author Dani Pettrey's Latest Romantic Suspense

When her friend vanishes from a cruise ship, reporter Darcy St. James isn't satisfied with their explanation that she simply left her job of her own accord. Something isn't lining up, and Darcy believes the only way to find the truth is to put herself in Abby's position. Within days, Darcy learns her friend wasn't the only person to disappear mysteriously. Last summer, a woman vanished under almost identical circumstances.

Gage McKenna has taken a summer-long stint leading adventure excursions for the passengers of various cruise lines that dock for a few days of sightseeing. He's surprised to find Darcy working aboard one of the ships, investigating a troubling report. Something sinister is going on and the deeper they dig the more Gage fears they've only discovered the tip of the iceberg.

Romance Suspense | Thriller | Inspirational Mystery [Bethany House, On Sale: September 1, 2013, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780764209840 / ]

You Can't Just Disappear in the Middle of the Ocean or Can You?

About Dani Pettrey

Dani Pettrey

Praised by New York Times best-selling author Dee Henderson as “a name to look for in romantic suspense,” Dani Pettrey has written eight novels, which have sold more than 300,000 copies. Dani combines the page-turning adrenaline of a thriller with the chemistry and happy-ever-after of a romance novel. Her novels stand out for their “wicked pace, snappy dialogue, and likable characters” (Publishers Weekly), “gripping storyline ...
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Anna Del Mar | Easy, Bubbly, Sexy Sangria

Anna del Mar

In our home, the holidays are all about family, about coming together to celebrate our blessings and have fun. We're a global bunch and people travel from all over to gather at our house. There's lots of laughter and an excess of delicious foods. But the star of the evening is my Mom's sangria.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle of your favorite red wine
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 apples
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1/2 a liter of Sprite or Seven Up

Preparation:

Begin with a bottle of wine. I prefer a Cabernet Sauvignon, but you can choose your favorite red. Hint: The wine doesn't have to be fancy or expensive, just full-bodied and delicious.

Next, slice oranges into thin wheels and cut up a couple of tart apples into small, square pieces. I use a red and a green apple to add variety to the flavors. Set the oranges aside and marinate the apples in a half a cup of wine. You can prepare the fruit early and keep it fresh and cold in the refrigerator.

When you are ready to serve, pour the reminder of the wine into your favorite festive pitcher and add two cups of cold Sprite or Seven Up. Hint: You can adjust the alcohol level by playing with the wine to fizz ratio. Testing this ratio is half the fun. :-)

Add a half tablespoon of sugar and mix well. Taste. Add more sugar if you like your cocktails sweet. Reduce the sugar amount by half if you're like me and prefer less sweetness in your sangria.

Add orange slices and marinated apples. Add a few squirts of fresh lemon. Serve over ice if you like your cocktails fizzy and cold like I do. Make sure everyone gets apples and oranges in their glass. Garnish with orange wheels.

Special Additions:

  • Lots of love.
  • Your family crowding the kitchen.
  • Your honey nearby.
  • Tons of laughter.

Happy holidays!

About Anna del Mar

Anna del Mar

Amazon Bestselling author Anna del Mar writes hot, smart romances that soothe the soul, challenge the mind, and satisfy the heart. Her stories focus on strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, sexy, kickass heroes who defy their limits to protect the women they love. A Georgetown University graduate, Anna enjoys traveling, hiking, skiing, and the sea. Writing is her addiction, her drug of choice, and what she wants to do all the time. The extraordinary men and women she met during her years as a Navy wife inspire the fabulous heroes and heroines at the center of her stories. When she stays put—which doesn’t happen very often—she splits her time between Colorado and Florida, where she lives with her indulgent husband and a very opinionated cat.

At the Brink | Wounded Warrior

WEBSITE | BLOG | FACEBOOK | TWITTER

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Kate Carlisle | California Christmas Potatoes

Kate Carlisle

New York Times bestselling mystery author Kate Carlisle is a native Californian who worked in television production for many years before turning to writing. Kate also studied acting and singing, toiled in vineyards, collected books, joined a commune, sold fried chicken, modeled spring fashions and worked for a cruise ship line, but it was the year she spent in law school that finally drove her to begin writing fiction. It seemed the safest way to kill off her professors. Kate's latest book, DECK THE HALLWAYS (a Fixer-Upper Mystery), is available in paperback and ebook wherever books are sold.

DECK THE HALLWAYS is my twentieth book, but the first one that's set at Christmas—and I had an absolute blast writing it! Lighthouse Cove is the perfect setting for an idyllic Christmas. Imagine how it would feel like stepping back in time, to see those beautiful old homes decked out for Christmas.

As DECK THE HALLWAYS begins, contractor Shannon Hammer is ready to take the lead on the largest project ever for the Holiday Homebuilders: they're going to convert a Victorian mansion into apartments for deserving families. The only fly in the ointment is the irascible banker overseeing the project, a man so obnoxious that he has enemies all over town, including Shannon's dad.

Dad came in closer and shoved Potter in the chest. The banker stumbled backwards. “One more word against Shannon and I’ll make you sorry you were ever born.” He was as angry as I’d ever seen him and I felt a frisson of fear as I worried about his heart.

“Oh, I’m so scared,” Potter whined sarcastically. But in typical coward style, he said it while backing toward the door.

“You should be scared,” Dad said through clenched teeth. He was still carrying his sharp, new ax and he raised it up to make his point. “If I hear you talking trash about my daughter again, I’ll kill you with my bare hands.”

Not long after this scene, Shannon has the bad luck to find another dead body—Potter's. The very man her dad threatened in front of dozens of volunteers. She planned for every contingency. . . except murder, her own father a prime suspect.

Like many of us, Shannon is busier than ever during the holidays. (Though one hopes that most of us don't have to clear our father's name or track down a killer.) Here's a great potluck recipe for a busy person on the go.

California Christmas Potatoes – aka California Thanksgiving Potatoes, if you use orange and yellow bell pepper instead of the red

(The full recipe is written out at the end of the blog.)

The ingredients:

the ingredients for California Christmas potatoes


Preheat the oven to 350. Peel the potatoes and cut into ½-inch chunks. Boil for 8-10 minutes, until tender.

peel potatoes
While the potatoes are boiling, cut the vegetables. From the bell pepper, cut five slices and set aside, then dice the rest of the pepper. From the poblano pepper, use kitchen shears to cut out ten leaves. Set the rest aside for another use. From the olives, set aside fifteen slices to use as the center of the flowers. Dice the rest of the olives, slice the green onions, and mince the cilantro.

cut flower pieces
Mix together the sour cream, taco seasoning, and shredded cheese.

sour cream and cheese
Drain the potatoes. Stir together all ingredients except the vegetables set aside to make the flowers.

mix together

Place the mixture in a greased 13x9-inch casserole dish. Form flowers on top.

make flowers on top

Bake until bubbly and golden brown, about 30 minutes.

finished potatoes in serving dish

Enjoy!

finished potatoes


California Christmas Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 6 large baking potatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 16 oz sour cream
  • 8 oz shredded cheese (Cheddar, Jack, or a combination)
  • 1 packet of taco seasoning
  • 1 small can of sliced olives
  • 4 green onions
  • ½ Cup cilantro

Preheat the oven to 350. Peel the potatoes and cut into ½-inch chunks. Boil for 8-10 minutes, until tender. While the potatoes are boiling, cut the vegetables. From the bell pepper, cut five slices and set aside, then dice the rest of the pepper. From the poblano pepper, use kitchen shears to cut out ten leaves. Set the rest aside for another use. From the olives, set aside fifteen slices to use as the center of the flowers. Dice the rest of the olives, slice the ...
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Fresh Contests for the Holidays

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