My C-Span Interview

On April 6, 2015, I was interviewed by C-Span for their “Cities Tour Topeka.”  This was aired on Sunday, May 3, 2015.

You can watch the interview here:

 

http://www.c-span.org/video/?325387-1/book-discussion-hometown-appetites

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Are you guilty of this grammar mistake?

Comprised vs. Composed

Are you guilty of this grammar mistake?

I have to admit that I am guilty.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/mans-wikipedia-crusade-turns-him-into-grammar-hero/

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Rave Reviews Book Club Member, Rebecca Carter

81KTXLL-d+L._SL1500_Today’s #PUSHWEEK #PUSHTUESDAY Lucky Winner is REBECCA CARTER, winner of our recent Book Club Discussion random drawing!! Her Twitter handle is@RebeccaCarter_E. She is the author of MYSTICAL EMONA

 http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00M9FEYF6.

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Pies and Pastries

Pies & Pastries

Did you know that “stressed” spelled backwards is “desserts”?

I love desserts.  Cherry and apple pie are at the top of my favorites list.

According to author, Janet Pittman, “Pastry has traditionally been a container for the workingman’s lunch.  Miners in England’s Cornwall left home every morning with a pastry-wrapped meat mixture in their pockets. The farmer in america came home at noon to chicken pot pie–a kind of chicken stew topped with a pastry lid.”

Restaurant chefs created puff pastries and across the Mediterranean travelers found flaky pastry sheets called filo or phyllo that were usually layered with dried fruits and nuts with lots of syrup.

Pittman states, that “a thrifty housewife in New England, trying to stretch her meager staples, discovered that a shallow pan needs less filling than a deep dish.  And that was the beginning of the basic round, shallow pie.”

Pies & Pastries will help the beginner pie/pastry maker in every way, from the equipment needed to making crust and how to decorate the top of the pie with a woven lattice design or how to flute the pie crust edge.  In a nut shell, this book is about the basics of creating pies and pastries.

No matter your ethnic background, there is something in this book for everyone.  There are recipes for Ratatouille Pie, Grandma’s Apple Pie, Pot Pies, Kulebiaka, Bacon-Tomato Rarebit, Calzones, Cornish Pasties, Pissaladiere, Empanadas de Queso, Sigaras, tarts, fruit pies, meat pies, Strudels, and much more.

Here is a recipe for “Baklava,” a Middle Eastern sweet.

3 cups finely chopped walnuts

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, if desired

About 3/4 cup butter

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 pound fresh or thawed frozen filo sheets

40 whole cloves, if desired

Honey syrup, see recipe below

 

Honey Syrup Ingredients:

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup water

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/3 cup honey

 

Combine walnuts and cinnamon, if desired.  Set aside.  Melt 3/4 cup butter and stir in oil.  Lightly brush a 13 inch by 9 inch baking pan with butter mixture.  Place 1 filo sheet in prepared pan, folding to fit in pan.  Lightly brush with butter mixture.  Repeat with 5 more filo sheets. Sprinkle the last sheet with a third of the nut mixture.  Place 1 filo sheet on top of the nut layer, folding to fit in pan.  Lightly brush with butter mixture.  Repeat with 3 more filo sheets.  Sprinkle the last shhet with half the remaining nut mixture.  Place 1 filo sheet on top of nut layer, folding to fit in pan. Lightly brush with butter mixture.  Repeat with 3 more filo sheets.  Sprinkle last sheet with remaining nut mixture.  Top with remaining filo sheets, folding to fit pan and brushing each sheet with butter mixture.  Press top layer firmly all over to lightly compact layers.  Trim any pastry that sticks above top layer.  Brush top with melted butter mixture.  If necessary, melt more butter.

Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C ).  With the tip of a very sharp knife, score a diagonal line from corner to corner.  Do not cut through layers.  On the same diagonal, score a line from the center points of adjoining sides.  Score a line between first line and second line.  Score another line between the second line and the corner.  Repeat on the other side of the first diagonal line.  Repeat all diagonals in the opposite directions to make 24 full diamonds and 16 half diamonds.

If desired, insert a clove in center of each piece.

Bake 30 minutes.

Immediately after placing Baklava in oven, prepare Honey Syrup.

After Baklava bakes 30 minutes, reduce heat to 300 F (150C ).

Bake 30 to 40 minutes longer until light golden brown.

Remove from oven.  Cut pastry on scored lines.  Pour Honey Syrup evenly over cut pastry.  Cool,  Makes 40 servings.

 

Honey Syrup:

Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan.  Stir frequently over medium heat until mixture comes to a full boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.  Stir in lemon juice and honey.  Cool slightly.

 

Enjoy!

 

Pies & Pastries, Appetizers, Main Dishes & Desserts

Published by HP Book, 1982

You can find this book on Amazon for the price of 1 cent to $133.

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Cynthia Helms

516jxvapkcl-_sy346_pjlook-inside-v2topright10_sh20_An Intriguing Life: A Memoir of War, Washington, and Marriage to an American Spymaster by Cynthia Helms with Chris Black (Rowman & Littlefield), 2012, 224 pages, $24.94; $14.95 e-Book. ISBN: 978-1-4422-2131-4.

About the book:

Rowman & Littlefield’s Fall 2013 catalog states,”From wartime England to Nixon’s America and beyond, Cynthia Helms was witness to some of the seminal events of our time–Vietnam, Watergate, and especially the demoralization of the CIA in the 1970s for political purposes.  Opening with her feminist ‘epiphany’ in 1968 that led her to end her first marriage of 24 years, this memoir reveals a world where appearances always had to be questioned, where rumors and gossip carried the weight of intrigue.”

“Cynthia Helms, (90 in 2012; today she is 93), has had a remarkable, if not, strictly speaking, an intriguing, life. If there’s any person of note she hasn’t met on either side of the Atlantic, it’s not obvious from her book, co-written with Chris Black.”  (The Washington Times)

“Helms…emerges as a pioneering woman who seized her destiny at a time when women were slowly beginning to transcent expectations placed upon them to meet the fresh demands and challenges of a new era.” (Publishers Weekly)

About the author:

Cynthia Ratcliff Helms is the widow of Richard M. Helms, the ex-director of Intelligence for the United States.  Chris Black is a wirter and communications consultant.

 

 

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Rubery Book Award

The Rubery Book Award is the longest established book award based in the UK for independent and self published books. The key to our success is having a keen eye for quality from distinguished and reputable judges.

Deadline – April 30, 2015

For more information visit:
http://www.ruberybookaward.com/

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Dining on a Dime

51anxmjvlll51egubibaplDining on a Dime Cookbook by Tawra Kellam and Jill Cooper, (Temple, TX: T&L Group), 2004 was formely published under the titled, Not Just Beans.

On page 3 the authors tell you how to save money throughout the year by giving up something.  For instance, in 2004, if you gave up one pizza delivery each week (they say the cost is $20) that you could save $1040 over the course of one year.

Page 8 “Basics of Frugal Cooking” are suggestions to help you spend less on your grocery bill.  For instance, “Drink water with your meals.”  You will save on the amount you spend on milk, juice or soft drinks.

Plan your meals in advance.  That way when you go shopping you buy only what you need.

This book has tips on how to eat better and spend less, to make your own baby food, how to save on herbs, and it even has a shopping list that you use.  There is a “Freezer Guide” that tells you which recipes freeze well, the foods that do not freeze well, and several freezer tips.

No cookbook would be a cookbook without recipes.  And this book is packed with recipes for even the most pickiest eater.  And the recipes are simple and the instructions are easy to follow.

Here is a Ham and Bean recipe that will warm you up this cold winter.

2 cups dried lima or great northern beans, washed well

1 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

2 cups ham, cubed in pieces

Soak beans overnight in 6 cups of water.  Drain and put in pot with 6 cups fresh water.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add ham and simmer over low heat for 2 to 3 hours or until beans are tender.  Serves 6 to 8.

If you serve a bowl of this ham and bean with corn bread you have a low cost hearty meal that keep you warm while the weather outside is either cold or swirling with snow.

Enjoy!

 

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