Edna’s Spooky Treats for Halloween

I will be adding to this post over the next few weeks. I wanted to at least get it started these are some of Edna’s treats for Halloween.

Halloween Treats

Let’s start with a drink.

Fizzy Cranberry-Orange Punch

Ingredients:

1 bottle cranberry juice
1 cup orange juice
2 cups vodka
2 cups lemon lime soda (Sprite/7-up)
orange and lemon slices, for garnish

Steps:

Combine cranberry juice, orange juice and vodka in a punch bowl, then top with lemon lime soda.
Garnish with orange and lemon slices and serve chilled.

Now a crunchy snack.

Apple Nachos

Ingredients:

4 Granny Smith apples, cored and thinly sliced
1 cup white chocolate chips, melted
¾ cup caramel, warmed in microwave
1 cup chopped pretzels
2 Heath bars, broken into pieces

Steps:

On a large plate, arrange apple slices on top of one another.
Drizzle half the white chocolate and caramel, then top with pretzels and Heath bars.
Drizzle with remaining white chocolate and caramel.
Serve immediately.

Something warm and easy before heading out for Trick or Treat.

Smoked Sausage and Peppers

Ingredients:

1 (14 ounce) package of Smoked Sausage, diagonally cut into 1/4-inch slices

2 Tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

1 cup onion, cut into thin slices, or 1-inch pieces.

2 cups red and green peppers, cut into thin slices, or 1-inch pieces.

1 garlic clove, minced.

Steps:

Saute sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat for 3 minutes, turning occasionally.
Add oil, garlic, onion, and peppers.

Cooking until tender, about 3 minutes.

Something sweet for dessert.

Dirt Pie

Ingredients:
1 pkg. (3.9 oz.) Chocolate Flavor Instant Pudding
2 cups cold milk
1 tub (8 oz.) Whipped Topping, thawed
15 Oreo Cookies, finely crushed (about 1-1/4 cups), divided

Gummy Worms

Steps:

Beat pudding mix and milk in large bowl with whisk 2 min. Let stand 5 min.

Stir in Whipped Topping and 1/2 cup cookie crumbs.
Spoon into 10 (6- to 7-oz.) paper or plastic cups; top with remaining cookie crumbs.
Refrigerate 1 hour.

Top with Gummy Worms before serving.

To be continued…

Thoughts on Cooking

 

Ok, I have been bitten by the inspiration bug. I tried not writing this blog for three hours, inspiration won out. 

So here it goes:

I am not sure when or why I started taking cooking seriously. Over the last two or three years something just clicked, throwing ingredients together made sense. I would like to think that some of the knowledge came from my year spent in Seattle, while there I participated in a Cooking Matters class, (twice) once in the fall and once in the spring. So the class was the same information wise but it was run by two different groups with different recipes and different techniques. 

I then took a position at the Greenwood Senior Center as a volunteer, as a prep-cook for their daily lunch program. I worked with a charming, wonderful older lady, she was short, spunky and loved to sing in Italian while she cooked. I listened and watched her create warm comforting meals for our guests everyday. She was an inspiration, she always made her dishes with love. I worked at the senior center for four months, given that the time flew by, it was the right place to be a the time. 

Moving on to more recent occurrences, I started writing a story called After the Glory. Within this story is a character named Rachel, she is a freelance writer that has a column in a small local paper. Citing recipes and gardening tips, I was inspired to create Recipes from Edna’s Kitchen and Edna’s Recipes for Autumn from her. She is partially modeled after my great grandmother.

All of this cooking and writing has led me to a favorite go to recipe that I would like to share with you all.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Ingredients:

1 4-6 lbs Pork Shoulder Roast

2 oz Hickory flavored Liquid Smoke (about half the bottle)

3 teaspoons Himalayan Pink Salt (enough to cover the roast)

Steps:

Rinse and pat dry Pork Roast

Stab the Pork Roast with a fork repeatedly on all sides

Rub crushed Himalayan Pink Salt into the Pork Roast

Place the Pork Roast into a Slow Cooker (Crock-Pot)

Pour Liquid Smoke over the Pork Roast

Cook on high for 4-6 hour or on low for 8-10 hours

When finished cooking, meat should be tender, taking two forks shred up meat.

Now for the good stuff Katsu Sauce.

Katsu Sauce

Ingredients:

1\2 cup Sugar

1\2 cup Ketchup

4 Tablespoons Worchestire Sauce

4 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

1\4 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1\4 teaspoon Paprika

Steps:

Combine all ingredients whisk together add a splash of water to thin out sauce if desired.

A simple recipe and oh so good, I pour the Katsu sauce over the shredded pork and service on a roll with macaroni salad.

There you go my rambling thoughts, feel free to comment or suggest one of your go to recipes.

 

I write for … who again?

I write for myself, I also take a lot of criticism. But if just one reader enjoyed the story that I created, then it was worth it.

The Wordsmithing World of Benjamin

I’m bad with names. I forget who it is I write for. Me? The masses? My close friends? Minority groups? Agents? Publishers?

I once spoke with Ed Falco, the author of The Family Corleone (a sequel to The Godfather). He said he had attempted a few of what I would call literary fiction. The kind of thing that’s intellectually stimulating but not widely appealing to a broad audience. He failed to publish one of these and said he got to the point where he “just wanted to publish a book.” So he tried his hand at commercial fiction. Not long after, he had the honor of continuing the story of the Corleone family.

This begs the question in my mind, “For whom do I write?”

Not an easy answer. At the heart I want to write what I want to write, the world with all its critics be damned. I…

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Choose Your Own Adventure

Don Lorah

Choose Your OwnAdventure

I wanted to be in the middle of the action without looking like I wanted to be in the middle of the action. So, I sat three stools over from the center of the bar.

Three was good.

Three was lucky.

“You want to get lucky?” a woman said, reading my mind.

“Excuse me?”

I turned, from my drink, to see a little black dress drop her matching purse on the bar next to me. She sat professionally crossing and uncrossing her legs.

“You mind if I sit here?”

I shrugged. “It’s a free country.”

“But not everything’s free.”

“Are we negotiating already?”

“Lady, you look real nice and all, but I’m not interested.”

She smiled. It contained the right amount of seduction and girl next door. It was a practiced smile. The kind of smile a salesman uses to get you to sign. But it her eyes carried the…

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Wishing White

MADD FICTIONAL

Woman-face-black-and-white-283819715

Connie screamed and hurdled down the flight of stairs like she was on fire. She made a run for the front door, fingers frantically fumbled at the night latch, deadbolt and lockset. Head on a swivel, she tossed panicked glances over her shoulder at the middle-aged black man bounding down the stairs toward her.

The final lock tumbled, she grabbed the knob and tugged but the man rushed up from behind and slammed the door shut. He spun the whippet-thin woman around as if she weighed nothing, took her by the shoulders and pressed her against the door. Connie let out an ear-piercing screech that he cut short by clamping his massive hand over her mouth.

“Stop it, do you hear me? I’m not trying to put on a show for the neighbors, so I need you to stop screaming. Just. Stop.” He held her there for a long moment…

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Strong Roots Amongst The Clay

MADD FICTIONAL

Clay Boy

Once there was a kindly woman who was known all about the town as Lovely Lucy, not so much for her appearance, for she was endowed with plain features—which wasn’t a bad thing at all—but she was called this because she was arguably one of the sweetest people who ever walked the face of the planet. The only parts of her life that suffered were her love life and her inability to bear children.

One morning, Lucy went to market and spoke with the town sculptor, who made statues large and small, some for himself and some which he sold. Lucy hadn’t much money so she explained what she wanted to do and begged the sculptor to spare some clay and promised to pay him another day. The sculptor remembered how Lucy had brought soup and sat by his bedside when he had taken ill, and gladly gave her as…

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Writing about writing

The Wordsmithing World of Benjamin

I don’t usually write about writing. For one, I’d usually rather write than write about it. Also, everyone’s writing style and philosophy is different. This causes me to grumble against headings like …

“Do It This Way and You Will Succeed as a Writer.”

I always read it as …

“Do It My Way or You Will Never Amount to Anything.”

Maybe those bloggers are right, or maybe I’ll just amount to something different. So I only have one rule for writers.

“Thou shalt write.”

If you stick to that rule then you are a writer. Congratulations. You may now put “writer” in your profile.

Everything else falls into place after the first rule. If you keep writing, you will be reading the work of others, getting feedback, and honing your craft. You will be doing these things because you want all that writing effort to be the best it…

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So, what’s happening?

Mark Lumby

Well, not as much as most indie writers out there who seem to be placing submissions everywhere at the moment. I will get to the point where I’m writing more, but unfortunately I’m not at the stage where I’m writing 3 books a year! I’m a slow burner!

But what I have written this year is a short story called ‘Lord of the Harvest’ which I submitted to Matthew Cash charity anthology by the name ‘Hymnbook’. The paperback is out now, or download the ebook from 14 June.

ClickHymnbook for information.
I also released the large short story ‘Bag of Buttons’ and is available at Amazon for download.

ClickBag of Buttons for more information.
The novel ‘the unlikely kind’ is still being edited but I really want to get this one out there.

But next up will be another short story called ‘Rats in the Loft’ followed by…

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My Voice

Get in My Head

Please don’t hate
The way I articulate
There’s no judgment here
Just you running in fear
It’s not just my hobby
No need to lobby
I’m not going anywhere
I just want to be here
In the present
Learning to represent
My feelings and emotions
And all my new devotions
To those who want to listen
Because this administration
Only wants to take
So we need to be awake
And stand strong
From those who do wrong
They drag us down
Making us look like clowns
Because we’re blind
Not of the same mind
So we surrender
To this fender bender
And give up
Stuck in a pileup
With no hope
So we learn to cope
With mediocrity
Drowning out the minority
Forgetting how to sympathize
No longer are we civilized
Stepping on toes
We bulldoze
Those who want to speak
Instead we critique
Every human
Adding onto the confusion

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First post

Blood, Fire & Grit

Once upon a time (so many a writer has begun) I was a film major. The dream was that I might dictate worlds. I wanted to make others see my vision, experience the story I had in my head. I wanted to be a film director.

Film school was a rude awakening, at least for me.  I was surrounded by some enormous talent, and my simpering ego couldn’t deal with it. I went from being a whale in a pond (among the most creative in my community) to being a minnow in a vast ocean of creativity. My dream and ego both shattered, I pretty much dropped out of school and took up drinking, drugs, and sampling every after-hours club in lower Manhattan. To quote a giant, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”

Fast-forward some years. I have tried my hand at many, many creative…

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