The Where, What, And Who of Writing: Holiday Edition

Fun with flash fiction

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acec5248e7a44c440b914e52716d9880--merry-christmas-images-christmas-snowmanThe Where, What, And Who of Writing: Holiday Edition and A Few Others 

Inspired by Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None and Clue, is my version of Where, What, And Who. I think of these as writing prompts to help get the writing juices flowing. I thank everyone for playing along, and invite you to be inspired by the prompts. Also feel free to suggest a place, an item and a name/occupation.

Post Thanksgiving Dinner at a Soup Kitchen

Pine Cone

Irving Rogers

Irving Rogers scraped the last of the mashed potatoes off of the paper plate, bringing the plastic spoon to his chapped lips. This is the second year Irving has partaken in the Missions free Thanksgiving meal. Irving sat up, leaning back in the metal folding chair, finishing off the apple juice from a red Solo cup, and glanced around at the few stragglers taking advantage of…

View original post 2,085 more words

Edna’s Kitchen Presents: The Four Seasons

Window display of autumn harvest foods

A collection of recipes representing the four seasons.

Winter

Pepper Jack Cheese Quick Bread

Italian Meatball Minestrone Soup with White Beans

Guinness Beef Stew with Cheddar Herb Dumplings

Slow Cooker Parmesan Honey Pork Roast

Spring

Mediterranean Layered Salad

Honey-Lime Berries and Greens

Dilled Cucumber and Tomato Salad

White Bean, Sausage and Spinach Casserole

Summer

Grilled Garlic Steak Salad

Artichoke-Pepper Pasta Salad

Roasted Cauliflower with Shallots, Orange and Thyme

Sesame-Peanut Chicken Lo Mein

Autumn

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Green Beans and Bacon

Butternut Squash Soup

Sausage, Dried Cranberry and Apple Stuffing

And of course:

Desserts

German Chocolate Sheet Cake

No-Bake Triple Berry Pie

Fruit-Topped Almond Cake

Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler

 

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Winter

Pepper Jack Cheese Quick Bread

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeño peppers 4 oz.

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk

¼ cup butter or margarine melted

2 eggs slightly beaten

Steps:

Heat oven to 350°. Lightly grease bottom only of loaf pan, 9x5x3 or 8 1/2×4

1/2×2 1/2 inches, with shortening or spray bottom with cooking spray.

Stir together flour, cheese, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in

medium bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients just until moistened (batter will be

lumpy). Spread in pan.

Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center

comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes run knife around edges of pan to loosen. Remove

from pan to wire rack. Cool 30 minutes before slicing.

 

Italian Meatball Minestrone Soup with White Beans

Meatball Ingredients:

1 pound ground beef 

1 ½ cups breadcrumbs 

2 small garlic cloves minced 

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon italian seasoning

½ teaspoon black pepper

pinch red pepper flakes

1 egg

2 tablespoons milk

Soup Ingredients:

olive oil

1 onion finely chopped

3 carrots peeled and diced

2 ribs of celery diced

1 large zucchini diced

2 teaspoons italian seasoning

1 teaspoon dry oregano

½ teaspoon black pepper

pinch salt

pinch red pepper flakes

3 large garlic cloves minced 

1 can tomato paste 3 oz.

5 cups beef stock hot

1  can navy beans 15 oz. drained and rinsed

parmesan rind chunk *optional

2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves

1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 tablespoon chopped basil

1 ½ cups cooked ditalini pasta *or small elbow pasta

grated parmesan for garnish

Steps:

Prepare your meatballs by adding the ground beef to a large bowl; to the beef add all of the rest of the meatball ingredients, and using your hands, mix the mixture until well combined. Portion out about ½ ounce meatballs, and roll, *golf ball size, chill meatballs for about 15 minutes. 

Once the meatballs have chilled, place a large soup pot over medium-high heat, and drizzle in about 3 tablespoons of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add in about half of the meatballs, and brown them on all sides for about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the browned meatballs and repeat with the remaining meatballs. Set browned meatballs aside for a moment.

Into that same pot drizzle more oil if needed, and add onion, carrots, and celery. Saute until slightly tender 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the zucchini, along with the italian seasoning, dry oregano, black pepper, pinch of salt, red pepper flakes, and garlic, and stir to combine.

Once the garlic becomes aromatic, add in the tomato paste, and cook that for about 30 to 45 seconds, just to cook out the raw flavor.

Next, add back into the pot the browned meatballs, along with the white beans and the beef stock, and stir to combine. Add parmesan rind chunk (if using), and cover the soup partially with a lid. Bring the soup to a rolling simmer, then reduce heat to low and gently simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After 25 minutes, turn off the heat and remove the parmesan rind, (if using). Add spinach leaves, parsley, basil, and stir. Taste for seasoning add additional salt/pepper if needed.

To serve, add ½ cup cooked pasta to bowl,  ladle soup over top. Garnish with grated parmesan, if desired.

 

Guinness Beef Stew with Cheddar Herb Dumplings

Ingredients:

For the Stew:

¼ pound bacon

2 pounds boneless beef chuck chopped into bite-sized pieces

kosher salt and black pepper

4 celery ribs chopped

3 large carrots chopped

1 large onion chopped

4 cloves garlic minced

2 large potatoes or parsnips diced

1 turnip diced

3 ounces tomato paste

1 bottle Guinness *12 oz.

4 cups low sodium chicken broth

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 bay leaf

3 sprigs thyme

1 tablespoon cornstarch *as needed

½ pound cremini mushrooms sliced *optional

Chopped parsley

For the Cheddar Herb Dumplings:

1 ½ cups self-rising flour

½  teaspoon garlic powder

⅓  cup shortening

¾ cup shredded Irish sharp cheddar

⅔  cup milk

2 tablespoons mixed fresh herbs such as parsley, chives, and thyme, chopped

Steps:

Cook bacon in a large, oven-safe, heavy-based pot or high-walled saute pan over medium heat.

Remove the bacon, crumble, and set aside, but leave the bacon fat in the pot. Season the beef with salt and pepper and fry in the bacon fat until browned on all sides. Remove the beef from the pan and set aside.

In the same pot, fry the onion, celery, and carrots until soft and fragrant, adding a little oil if necessary.

Add garlic and fry for another 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato paste.

Pour in the Guinness and Worcestershire sauce. Allow to come to a simmer and stir with a wooden spoon, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot.

Add the beef back to the pot and pour in the chicken broth. Add the bay leaf and thyme.

Reduce to a simmer and cover. Simmer for 1 ½  hours. Add the potatoes or parsnips and the turnip. Simmer for another ½ hour, until the vegetables are tender.

Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs. If the stew is still thin, mix a tablespoon of cornstarch with a tablespoon of cold water to form a slurry. Mix the slurry into the stew and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer again, stirring occasionally, and add in the mushrooms if desired. Cook for 10 minutes, uncovered, until the stew thickens and the mushrooms are cooked through. Stir the bacon in. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Stir together the self-rising flour and garlic powder in a medium bowl. Cut in the shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the cheddar cheese, then add the milk and stir until the dry ingredients are moistened.

Make small balls with the dough and place them on top of the stew, leaving them room to expand– they grow a lot as they cook. Place the stew in the oven uncovered and bake until the dumplings are browned and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Garnish the stew with parsley and serve.

 

Slow Cooker Parmesan Honey Pork Roast

Ingredients:

1 boneless pork loin roast 3 to 4 lbs.

⅔ cup grated parmesan cheese

½ cup honey

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon dried basil

1 tablespoon dried oregano

2 tablespoons chopped garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

½  teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons cornstarch

¼ cup chicken broth

1 teaspoon sugar optional

Steps:

Place roast in slow cooker.

In a bowl combine cheese, honey, soy sauce, basil, oregano, garlic, oil, and salt.

Pour mixture over the top of roast.

Cover and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours or until thermometer reads 160 degrees.

Remove meat and place on platter.

Strain juices in slow cooker and put into a small saucepan.

Mix cornstarch and chicken broth together.

Add into strained juices and stir until thickened over medium heat.

Add in a teaspoon of sugar if sauce needs to be a bit sweeter, optional

Slice roast and serve with glaze.

 

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Spring

Mediterranean Layered Salad

Ingredients:

Dressing

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 Tablespoons lemon juice

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 ½ teaspoons honey

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Salad

8 cups chopped romaine lettuce (12 oz)

1 container (8 oz) prepared hummus

1 ½ cups cherry tomatoes, halved

1 medium English (hothouse) cucumber, chopped (3 ½ cups)

1 jar (6 oz) marinated artichoke hearts, drained, coarsely chopped

1 medium red onion, thinly sliced (1 cup)

½ cup coarsely chopped pitted Kalamata olives

1 cup crumbled feta cheese (4 oz)

Steps:

In small bowl, stir all dressing ingredients together with whisk until well blended.

Arrange lettuce on large serving platter. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the dressing. Place small dollops of hummus evenly over lettuce. Layer tomatoes, cucumbers, artichoke hearts, onion, olives and feta cheese on top of hummus. Serve with remaining dressing.

 

Honey-Lime Berries and Greens

Ingredients:

Salad:

6 cups mixed salad greens

¾ cup fresh strawberries or raspberries

4 thin red onion slices, separated into rings

2 Tablespoons sliced almonds, if desired

Dressing:

¼ cup lime juice

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil

3 Tablespoons honey

¼ teaspoon poppy seed

¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard

Steps:

In medium bowl, gently toss salad ingredients.

In small bowl, mix dressing ingredients. Serve dressing with salad.

 

Dilled Cucumber and Tomato Salad

Ingredients:

4 medium tomatoes, each cut into 8 wedges (about 3 cups)

2 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced (about 5 cups)

½ cup finely chopped red onion

½ cup rice vinegar

4 teaspoons sugar

1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill

½ teaspoon seasoned salt

Steps:

In large glass serving bowl, mix tomatoes, cucumbers and onion.

In small bowl, mix all remaining ingredients until blended. Pour vinegar mixture over vegetables; toss to mix. Cover; refrigerate 1 hour to blend flavors. Toss again just before serving. Serve with slotted spoon.

 

White Bean, Sausage and Spinach Casserole

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 lb bulk mild Italian sausage

1 medium onion chopped

2 cloves garlic minced

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 bag fresh baby spinach *5 oz.

1 can organic fire roasted diced tomatoes undrained *14.5 oz.

1 can organic fire roasted crushed tomatoes undrained *14.5 oz.

1 can cannellini beans drained and rinsed *19 oz. 

¾ cup plain panko crispy bread crumbs

Steps:

Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 13×9-inch (3-quart) baking dish with cooking spray.

In 12-inch skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Add sausage; cook 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until no longer pink. Add onion, garlic, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes. Continue to cook 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until onions have softened slightly. Sprinkle flour over top, and cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Add half of the spinach to sausage mixture; cook and stir about 1 minute or until wilted. Add remaining half of the spinach; continue to cook and stir about 1 minute or until wilted. Add tomatoes and beans. Cook about 1 minute, stirring and scraping bottom of pan, until combined. Remove from heat; transfer to baking dish.

In small bowl, mix bread crumbs and remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Sprinkle over top. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until bubbly around edges and brown on top.

 

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Summer

Grilled Garlic Steak Salad

Ingredients:

Spicy Garlic Dressing

⅓ cup olive or vegetable oil

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon chopped fresh or ½ teaspoon dried oregano leaves

½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

Salad:

1 pound beef boneless sirloin steak, 1 to 1 ½ inches thick

1 large red or yellow bell pepper, cut into strips

1 cup sliced mushrooms (3 ounces)

¼ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon pepper

6 cups bite-size pieces salad greens

Steps:

Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. In tightly covered container, shake all dressing ingredients, reserve ¼ cup.

Cover and grill beef over medium heat 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until desired doneness. In medium bowl, toss bell pepper and mushrooms with 2 Tablespoons of the dressing, place in grill basket. Cover and grill vegetables 5 minutes, shaking grill basket to turn vegetables occasionally, until bell pepper is crisp-tender.

Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper, cut into ¼ inch slices. Toss beef and reserved ¼ cup dressing. In large bowl, place salad greens, vegetables and beef. Add remaining dressing, toss.

 

Artichoke-Pepper Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

2 ⅔ cups uncooked fusilli (corkscrew) pasta (8 oz)

1 jar (7 oz) roasted red bell peppers, drained, chopped

1 jar (2.5 oz) sliced mushrooms, drained

1 jar (6 to 7 oz) marinated artichoke hearts, undrained

2 Tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese

½ teaspoon pepper

2 Tablespoons pine nuts

3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves, if desired

Steps:

Cook and drain pasta as directed on package. Rinse with cold water, drain.

Meanwhile, in large bowl, mix bell peppers, mushrooms, artichoke hearts (with liquid), cheese and pepper. Add pasta, toss. Sprinkle with nuts and basil.

 

Roasted Cauliflower with Shallots, Orange and Thyme

Ingredients:

2 medium heads cauliflower, cut into florets (9 to 10 cups)

2 medium shallots, sliced

⅓ cup olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon ground pepper

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves

2 teaspoons shredded orange peel 

¼ cup toasted pine nuts, if desired

Steps:

Heat oven to 400°F. Spray 18×13-inch rimmed pan with cooking spray.

In large bowl, mix cauliflower, shallots, olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread in pan. Roast 35 minutes, stir. Roast 15 to 20 minutes longer or until browned and tender.

Toss roasted cauliflower with thyme and orange peel. Top with pine nuts.

 

Sesame-Peanut Chicken Lo Mein

Ingredients:

6 oz uncooked fettuccine

2 Tablespoons sesame oil

1 package (14 oz) chicken breast tenders (not breaded), cut into 1 inch pieces

2 medium bell peppers (any color), cut into thin strips

¼ cup creamy peanut butter

3 Tablespoons soy sauce

3 Tablespoons water

4 medium green onions, chopped (¼ cup)

Steps:

Cook and drain fettuccine as directed on package. Rinse with cold water, drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in 12 inch wok or nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in oil 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until no longer pink in center. Add bell peppers, cook 3 to 4 minutes longer, stirring frequently, until crisp-tender. Reduce heat to low.

In small microwavable bowl, microwave peanut butter on High 30 seconds to soften. Stir in soy sauce and water with whisk until smooth.

Add cooked fettuccine and peanut sauce to skillet with chicken and bell peppers. Cook and stir until hot. Garnish with onions.

 

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Autumn

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons sesame seeds

1 Tablespoon poppy seeds

½ cup white sugar

½ cup olive oil

¼ cup distilled white vinegar

¼ teaspoon paprika 

¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 Tablespoon minced onion

10 ounces fresh spinach – rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces

1 quart strawberries – cleaned, hulled and sliced

¼ cup almonds, blanched and slivered

Steps:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, paprika, Worcestershire sauce and onion. 

Cover, and chill for one hour.

In a large bowl, combine the spinach, strawberries and almonds. Pour dressing over salad, and toss. 

Refrigerate 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

 

Green Beans and Bacon

Ingredients:

4 bacon strips, diced

½ cup chopped onion

8 cups fresh green beans, trimmed

¼ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon pepper

Steps:

In a large skillet, cook bacon and onion over medium heat until bacon is crisp and onions are tender.

Meanwhile, place beans in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. 

Cook, uncovered, for 8-10 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain well. 

Add cooked green beans to bacon mixture. 

Sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss to coat.

 

Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients:

One 2- to 3-pound butternut squash, peeled and seeded

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium onion, chopped

6 cups chicken stock

nutmeg

salt and freshly ground black pepper

Steps:

Cut squash into 1-inch chunks. 

In large pot melt butter. 

Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. 

Add squash and stock. 

Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. 

Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. 

Return blended squash to pot. 

Stir and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. 

Serve warm.

 

Sausage, Dried Cranberry and Apple Stuffing

Ingredients:

1 pound mild bulk breakfast sausage

4 Tablespoons butter

3 cups sliced leeks, white and pale-green parts only, cleaned well (about 2 large leeks)

2 granny smith apples, cored and chopped

1 cup chopped celery with leaves

1 Tablespoon poultry seasoning

1 cup dried cranberries, rehydrated in boiling water for 15 minutes and drained

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves

2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary

6 cups boxed bread cubes (croutons)

⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves

2 to 3 cups chicken stock

1 Tablespoon salt

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

Steps:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Saute the sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through, crumbling coarsely with the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. 

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage and drippings to a large bowl. 

Melt the butter in the same skillet over medium-high heat. 

Add the leeks, apples, celery and poultry seasoning to the skillet and saute until the are soft, about 8 minutes. 

Mix in the drained cranberries, sage and rosemary. Add the mixture to the sausage, then mix in the croutons and parsley. 

Next add the chicken stock a little at a time until the stuffing is very moist. Be sure not to overdo it; it shouldn’t be mushy. Season with salt and pepper. 

Place in a casserole dish. 

Bake in a 14-inch oval or 9 by 13-inch rectangular casserole dish and place, uncovered, in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until the top is crispy and the center piping hot. 

Remove and serve immediately.

 

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Desserts

German Chocolate Sheet Cake

Ingredients:

Cake:

1 box German chocolate cake mix

Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box 

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated)

½ cup flaked coconut

½ cup chopped pecans

Frosting:

½ cup butter or margarine, softened

1 box (1 lb) powdered sugar (4 cups)

⅓ cup unsweetened baking cocoa

1 teaspoon vanilla

⅓ cup milk

Steps:

Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Spray 15x10x1-inch pan with cooking spray.

Make cake mix as directed on box, using water, oil and eggs. Pour into pan. Bake 15 minutes.

Set oven control to broil. In a medium bowl, mix condensed milk, coconut and pecans; spread over warm cake. Broil on lowest oven rack about 2 minutes or until golden. Cool completely in pan on cooling rack, about 1 hour.

In large bowl, beat butter, powdered sugar, cocoa and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed until blended. Gradually add milk, beating until frosting is smooth and spreadable. Frost cake. Store covered in refrigerator.

 

No-Bake Triple Berry Pie

Ingredients:

1 cup water

¾ cup sugar

2 Tablespoons cornstarch

½ package (4-serving size) Jell-O™ raspberry-flavored gelatin (3 Tablespoons)

3 cups sliced strawberries

1 cup blueberries 

1 cup raspberries

1 package (6 ounces) ready-to-use shortbread pie crust 

Whipped cream, if desired

Steps:

Mix water, sugar and cornstarch in 2-quart saucepan. Heat just to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute; remove from heat. Stir in gelatin until dissolved. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens.

Fold berries into gelatin mixture. Pour into crust. Refrigerate for about 2 hours or until set. Serve with whipped cream. Store covered in refrigerator.

 

Fruit-Topped Almond Cake

Ingredients:

Cake:

½ box yellow cake mix (about 1 ⅔ cups)

½ cup water 

½ cup slivered almonds, finely ground

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil

½ teaspoon almond extract

2 eggs 

Topping:

3 cups assorted fresh berries (such as raspberries, blueberries and blackberries) 

¾ cup apricot preserves

3 Tablespoons apple juice

3 Tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted, if desired

Steps:

Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Generously spray bottom and side of 8 or 9 inch round cake pan with baking spray with flour.

In large bowl, beat cake ingredients with electric mixer on low speed until moistened, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan.

Bake and cool as directed on box for 8 or 9 inch rounds.

Place berries in medium bowl. In 1 quart saucepan, heat preserves and apple juice to boiling, stirring frequently. Pour over berries, toss berries until coated with preserves mixture. Let stand 5 minutes.

Gently cut off any dome from top of cake, using serrated knife, to make top level. On serving plate, place cake, sliced side down. Arrange berries on cake, drizzle with syrup remaining in bowl. Sprinkle with sliced almonds. Store leftover cake covered in refrigerator

 

Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler

Ingredients:

8 cups chopped rhubarb

1 cup sliced fresh strawberries 

2 cups white sugar 

2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour 

¾ cup brown sugar 

¾ cup quick-cooking oats 

¾ cup all-purpose flour 

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 

½ cup butter

Steps:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 

Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.

Combine rhubarb, strawberries, white sugar, and 2 tablespoons flour in a bowl; spread into the prepared baking dish.

Mix brown sugar, oats, 3/4 cup flour, and cinnamon together in a bowl; cut butter into brown sugar mixture using a pastry blender or 2 forks until crumbly. 

Sprinkle over rhubarb mixture.

Bake in the preheated oven until cobbler is bubbling and lightly browned, about 45 minutes. 

Serve hot or cold.

 

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No matter the season Edna’s Kitchen is full of delicious recipes. Here’s to a new year full of food, family and friends.  

Other collections from Edna’s Kitchen ebook cookbooks on Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Megan-Hinde/e/B018F9AT1C/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1533669717&sr=1-2-ent

Centerpiece

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The Where, What and Who of Writing: Holiday inspired writing prompt. This one kinda ran away with itself.

Post Thanksgiving Dinner at a Soup Kitchen

Pine Cone

Irving Rogers
Irving Rogers scraped the last of the mashed potatoes off of the paper plate, bringing the plastic spoon to his chapped lips. This is the second year Irving has partaken in the Missions free Thanksgiving meal. Irving sat up, leaning back in the metal folding chair, finishing off the apple juice from a red Solo cup, and glanced around at the few stragglers taking advantage of the warmth before venturing back out into the frigid cold air of late November.

As he finished his food, he noticed the centerpieces that sat in the middle of each folding table. There were three oversized pine cones, sitting on a white plate with a fat red candle in the middle, and a string of little silver balls interweaved between the pine cones and candle. Irving stood up from the table, and took his trash to the bin next to the kitchen. He then returned to the table, picked up his navy blue, heavy, wool overcoat off of the back of the folding chair and proceeded to put it on. Now as he was about to leave the Mission to head back out into the cold, a strange compulsion came over him, he grabbed one of the pine cones off of the centerpiece and quickly stuffed it into the pocket of his overcoat.

Irving took a deep breath as he opened the outer doors of the Mission, the cold air bit at his exposed cheeks, making the already chapped skin sting. He walked away from the Mission building and headed down an abandoned alleyway, trying to keep the frigid wind to his back. The men’s overnight shelter was on the other side of town, from the Mission. A good thirty minute walk in nice weather, the gusting winds and snow making Irving’s feet drag even slower than usual. When he came to a stack of pallets next to a dumpster Irving had to sit down. His whole body ached, his eyelids grew heavy, he fought to keep them open. But sleep, overtook Irving as he sat huddled against the dumpster.

The voice was faint, Irving was pulled from his dream as the voice repeated what it had said. “Sweety, there’s coffee.” a light female voice said from a distance. Irving was pulled further from his dream as the voice spoke again, this time closer. “Irving, we’re going to be late.” it said this time she ran her fingers through his hair. Irving opened his eyes.

Realizing that he was in a bed, in a room, looking at familiar bright green eyes. “Jessie?” He asked. “Yes, who else would it be?” She answered. He sat up taking her face into his hands and kissed her. She let out a sigh and kissed him back. “What was that for?” She asked looking into his dark, soft eyes. “Just because, I love you.” “I love you too, but we do need to get going.”

Irving laid back against the pillows, letting his surrounding sink in. This is our house, our bedroom. Jessie is here, we’re happy. I’m back to our life together…before it happened. Irving got up, showered, dressed and joined Jessie in the kitchen. “I’m ready.” He said, sliding his arms around her and holding her tight.

Sausage, Dried Cranberry and Apple Stuffing from Edna’s Kitchen

Holiday Season

cch217

Sausage, Dried Cranberry and Apple Stuffing

Ingredients

1 pound mild bulk breakfast sausage
4 Tablespoons butter
3 cups sliced leeks, white and pale-green parts only, cleaned well (about 2 large leeks)

*note I used half an onoin instead of leeks*

2 granny smith apples, cored and chopped
1 cup chopped celery with leaves
1 Tablespoon poultry seasoning
1 cup dried cranberries, rehydrated in boiling water for 15 minutes and drained
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
6 cups boxed bread cubes (croutons)
⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 to 3 cups chicken stock
1 Tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper

Steps

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Saute the sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through, crumbling coarsely with the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage and drippings to a…

View original post 138 more words

One More Time

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Look MORE FREE ebooks on Amazon.

*Because that’s what I do*

But in all seriousness, this should be the last Amazon giveaway for the year.

Edna’s Kitchen Ebook Cookbooks Free November 17th-21st

Erotic Mystery Thriller Short Stories Ebooks Free November 17th-21st

https://www.amazon.com/Megan-Hinde/e/B018F9AT1C/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1533669717&sr=1-2-ent

 

Other quick announcements:

I am working on writing the rest of Accused, as I have left poor Detective James Andrews waiting. And there is also a new Holiday Treats From Edna’s Kitchen -Vol. 2 ebook cookbook that should show up on Amazon in the next few days.

Besides that, I thank and appreciate all of you that continue to read and support my rambling of words.

Seasons Greetings, Happy Holidays, and Here’s to a prosperous New Year.

-Megan

https://cch217549678581.wordpress.com/2019/09/30/accused/

**also this is still around and yes I do earn a small percent of the royalties, being that it’s an anthology. So if you haven’t picked up a copy please do, or at least share it around. It is most appreciated.**

Rambling

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As 2019 comes to a close I am stepping back and looking at where I’m at and how far this writing thing has taken me. So here it goes, I just did an Amazon ebook giveaway that ran during the last week of October. I am personally impressed with the numbers especially the ebook cookbook Holiday Treats From Edna’s Kitchen, 187 copies.

For context:

Fiction Short Stories:

After the Glory

Grace’s Journey 10 

The Complete Collection 15

No Rest For The Wicked 7

Haunted Hydrangeas 22

Non-Fiction Cookbooks:

Edna’s Recipes for Summer 32

Recipes from Edna’s Kitchen 32

Holiday Treats From Edna’s Kitchen 187 

Grand Total of 312 copies picked up between October 27th & October 31st.

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I also appreciate the readers that take the time to give me a rating or review on Amazon and Goodreads. I’ll take a two star over no rating any day, and I need your (the readers) feedback so that I can understand what I may have overlooked or see my piece of writing in a new light. *Which happens once in a while* 

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https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15199202.Megan_Hinde

I have put some of my works up on Tablo which is a site that I get occasional feedback on, I believe that most of their readers are in Australia.

https://tablo.io/megan-hinde

On WordPress I get a wide audience, not a whole lot of feedback or comments but it does give me an idea of my reach around the world.

To me my biggest achievement of the past year was being included in Fluky Fiction’s Anthology, although being a small indie-publisher they don’t seem to have much reach. I would like to find more projects to be included in, however the stack of hay is extremely high and the needle is buried deep. There are so many specific anthologies, genres, writing contests and ect…that searching through it gives me a headache. And I do try to remember that I Write For Myself, as a hobby for enjoyment.

In my journey of self-publishing I am proud of Haunted Hydrangeas: An Experiment in Flash Fiction I think it came together well, and what else was I going to do with all those little writing prompts.

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As far as Edna and her kitchen, I feel that I have a good assortment started and if I feel motivated to put another specific group of recipes together I probably will. Until then it’s going to be pushing marketing and exposure for what I have already self-published on Amazon.

https://cch217.wordpress.com/2018/09/22/ednas-kitchen-presents-recipes-by-request/

Now as for dear Detective James Andrews I feel that I may have written him into a corner…although like any good soap opera I am sure there is a way out. I just haven’t thought of what it is yet. (If I had a little more feedback on Stella, James, Daniel and Holly I could decide which way it needs to go) Just Saying 

https://www.amazon.com/Megan-Hinde/e/B018F9AT1C/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1533669717&sr=1-2-ent

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As always I’m thankful and appreciative to all the people that read, enjoy and comment on my rambling of words, fictional and non. So here’s to the upcoming Holiday Season and New Year on the horizon. Cheers.

Birth of a Character

Cch217

20181112_223008Funny thing about writing, at least for me, the characters that I write, dream up, imagine, tend to just happen. I start with a name, usually randomly generated or asked for in a Where, What and Who of Writing prompt. I then put the name into the plot of the story and give it a description, build, hair color, eye color, clothing, behaviors, personality. Add some relevant dialog, either as internal monologuing, or with another character. I also do pull personality traits from people that I have known or just observed during my life. The point of this ramboling flow of words, I was going over the characters that I had come up with over the last few years,because I have writer’s block and was looking to see if I could expand on any of the short stories that I have started.

So for your reading enjoyment, and hopefully…

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Favorite Lines of All Time

Cch217

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Just a few of my favorite lines and sceens from my writing. 💙

Memories

It was summer, I was 14 and I had discovered the music of Queen, which I listened to constantly on my Walkman.

Lola’s Story

“Do you want to hold him?” the nurse asked.

“No,” Lola said turning her head away from the newborn, trying to keep the tears at bay.

Tips

From the first time I saw her I knew I had to taste those soft, cherry lips. I watched as she slid the lip gloss wand over her lower lip, how it glistened in the summer sun. She rubbed her lips together, giving a kiss to the air.

Zeb

Zeb put his hand over hers, giving it a light squeeze. He reached over and touched the side of her face, her skin was cold from the rain. He leaned in, kissing her lightly on the…

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First Lines/Scenes

Cch217

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It was a warm windy day in early April, Detective James Andrews entered the downtown police precinct.

“Message for you,” the desk attendant said holding up a pink slip of paper.

“Thanks,” Detective Andrews said as he snatched the paper from the attendant and continued on to his desk.

Betrayed

Tuesday Dinner

“Really, meatloaf again?” Henry said as he sat down at the table.

Ruth smiled, poured him a glass of milk and sat down to enjoy her dinner. Henry took three bites, and tossed his fork on to his plate.

“You know what Ruth? I’m done, I’m done with your dried out meatloaf and with you,”

Deceit

Scarlet keep step with the big brute that was Marco Bishop, through the city streets, she followed him up to his apartment building.

“Good evening, Mr. Bishop,” the doorman said.

“It should be,” Marco said nodding towards Scarlet, as he…

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Happy Halloween: Free Ebooks

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BOO! Happy Halloween there are free ebooks on Amazon today October 30th and tomorrow October 31st.

My treat to you all, I thank you all for reading my rambling words and for enjoying Edna’s Kitchen. Doing this whole writing thing for the last few years has been a pleasure.

Treats for All:

From Edna’s Kitchen:

 

From my twisted mind:

 

And the extras:

 

https://www.amazon.com/Megan-Hinde/e/B018F9AT1C/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1533669717&sr=1-2-ent

Thank You All, I look forward to coming up with more random words for you to enjoy in the coming year. -Megan