Archive | June 2015

New Excerpt For More Than Words!

Hello, everyone! I’m happy to tell you that I signed the contract for Book #3 Made For Me (Keith and Sabrina’s Story.) It’s in its first round of editing right now! The projected release date is September 28. More info on that very soon. 🙂

In the meantime, I have another little sample of More Than Words, (Ben and Tracy’s story.) Readers are giving it wonderful reviews! They say it is the perfect combination of sweet and spicy. After nibbling on this excerpt, scroll down for a longer FREE sample of my newest romance. I have to say, I totally book boyfriend crushed on Ben in this one. Something about the strong and silent ones. Since Fall For You, Book #1, Ben has decided that actions speak louder than words when it comes to getting Tracy’s attention…

*****

She smelled the alluring scent of Ben’s aftershave before realizing he was right behind her. Tracy closed her eyes and breathed it in. It was subtle yet spicy and undeniably sexy. He placed his hands on the shelf over her head and whispered in her ear. “I told you to ask for help.”

Help! Who needs help? Being surrounded by Ben was totally working for her. Oh. Help reaching the bags. Tracy dropped to her feet at the sound of his voice. She turned around to face him and was essentially caged in by his body.

He leaned in until the tip of his royal blue tie touched the front of her T-shirt. She had no idea why she was staring at his tie except that it was coming closer until everything else was blurred. Ben stopped moving when barely an inch separated them.

Tracy tilted her head back and her breath caught when she saw the look on his face. Ben stared at her like a starving man offered his favorite meal. Somewhere in the back of her mind, a crazy part of her was thinking about how the blue in his tie brought out the beautiful sky-blue shade of his eyes. The rest of her was trying to remember how to suck air into her lungs.

Come on Trace, breathe!

Just when she thought he was going in for a kiss, he nuzzled his nose against her throat and softly inhaled.

Lucid thought fled the scene. Yep, there went her breath with it.

“You always smell like peaches.” The vibrations from his voice rumbled against her skin.

Peaches? What the hell are peaches?

“What?” she squeaked out in a breathy exhale.

Right as she asked the question……

*****

Click the buy links above to read what happens next! 🙂 Happy reading, my friends.

Red White and Blue My Mind!!!

Hi Everybody! 

With the 4th of July holiday around the corner, Sophie asked me to stop by and give you all my Red White and Blue My Mind cupcake recipe.  It’s an almond flavored cupcake with a raspberry filling, topped with a blue swirled buttercream frosting.

rwbcupcakes

Now, some people may feel intimidated by a cupcake with filling, but it’s really super easy.  There’s a tool out there that makes this process simple and easy for anyone who’s baking, whether they’re a beginner or a pro.  You can usually find it in stores where they sell baking supplies.  It’s a cupcake corer and it looks like this: 

cupcakecorerIf you’re not able to find one, don’t panic!!  You can still core your cupcake.  Just take a small sharp knife and carefully cut a circle out of the center of the cupcake.  Be careful not to cut all the way through the cupcake when using this method.

The swirled frosting technique is a bit tricky, but with some practice, you’ll get the hang of it.  When you’ve gotten your piping bag with whichever icing tip you’ve chosen ready to go (I typically use the Wilton open star tip #1M), it’s time to add some swirls!  Using a toothpick, or even a small paint brush if you have one, take some of the blue food coloring (gel food coloring works best) and paint along the creases on two sides of your piping bag.  It should look like this:

IMG_2978

At this point, add your buttercream to the bag and frost your cupcakes like you normally would.  The blue food coloring will create a swirl pattern in the frosting.

So there you go!  The recipe itself is listed below.  Make these yummy cupcakes to take to a 4th of July Party and impress all your friends with your mad skills!!

Much Love!
Tracy

Red White and Blue My Mind Cupcakes
Yields 12
A delicious almond flavored cupcake with a raspberry filling, topped with a buttercream frosting.
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For the Cupcake
  1. 3 egg whites, room temperature
  2. 1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp buttermilk
  3. 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  4. 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  5. 1 1/4 cup cake flour
  6. 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
  7. 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  8. 1 Tbsp almond extract
For the Raspberry Filling
  1. 12 oz frozen unsweetened raspberries, thawed
  2. 1/2 cup sugar
  3. 1 tsp lemon juice
  4. 2 heaping tablespoons cornstarch
For the Buttercream Frosting
  1. 1 cup (2 stick) butter or margarine softened
  2. 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract (or almond extract)
  3. 4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar (approximately 1 lb.)
  4. 2 tablespoons milk
For the Cupcake
  1. Whisk together the egg whites, almond extract and 2 Tbsp milk in small bowl until combined. Set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar for 2-3 minutes on medium. Add in dry ingredients and mix until combined. Slowly add in egg white mixtures. Beat in remaining milk.
  3. Fill cupcake liners half full with batter and bake in a 350 degree oven for 15-17 minutes.
  4. Remove and cool in pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the Raspberry Filling
  1. Thaw raspberries.
  2. With a fine wire strainer, use a spoon to press the raspberries so that the seedless pulp falls into a bowl below. Strain enough pulp to get between 1/3 - 1/2 cup of pulp (I usually get close to the 3/4 cup). Add enough water to equal 3/4 cups.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine raspberry juice/water, sugar, lemon juice, and cornstarch. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture bubbles and thickens (remember it will continue to thicken as it cools). Remove from heat, set aside.
  4. Cool and place in the refrigerator for up to a week.
For Buttercream Frosting
  1. In large bowl, beat butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla (or almond extract).
  2. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
  3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.
Notes
  1. To make the blue swirl in the frosting, use a gel food coloring and a toothpick or small paint brush, paint inside the piping bag along the creases. (It's better to use a disposable bag for this) Fill the bag with the buttercream and frost as you normally would.
Susan Behon https://susanbehon.com/