Fictionista, Foodie, Feline-lover

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Mysteries of Christmas Past..Day One


My story for this collection revolves around a sweet treat that is now a tradition in my family after my sister's girlfriend made it for us the first time.  It's called Bubble Loaf, and  you basically defrost two loaves of frozen bread dough, pinch off pieces, roll them in butter and then in sugar mixed with dried orange peel and bake. You can eat the "bubbles" hot or cold and they'll freeze if you have leftover. (You won't.)

Basically, my story is a love letter to my little sister who absolutely loved Christmas. I think that I captured the nature of our relationship pretty well in this story, especially that unspoken understanding that exists between sisters, even when they don't always get along well. 

You can buy it here

Here's the blurb:

Mistletoe, mayhem and murder merrily collide in this collection of holiday stories from six of your favorite cozy and historical mystery authors. Curl up by the fire to enjoy this limited-time anthology.

Harm for the Holidays by Katherine H. Brown: Having lost her post as a governess, when Annabeth Watson returns home for Christmas she's returning home to stay. A less than welcome reception from her father isn't surprising, but the murder of a maid is quite shocking. Can Annabeth find the truth of what happened during the house party, against her father's wishes, or will the lecherous Lord Gresham and mysterious Lord Wright keep her from investigating?

The Christmas Tree Caper: A Small Town Holiday Cozy Mystery (Wintervale Mysteries Book 1) by Melodie March: There are secrets hidden behind the perfectly starched curtains of the houses in the sleepy mountain town of Wintervale... but Meg Harrison and the rest of the Green Mountain Grannies are on the case!

Christmas Treasures by Katherine Moore: The notation on a treasured family recipe turns the holiday into a mystery and brings two sisters closer together.

The Mystery of the Christmas Bauble by Carmen Radtke: A clairvoyant, a crime, and a prophecy: Some mysteries ripple through time. When an inherited Christmas ornament reveals its hitherto hidden message, it connects the past and the present for the finders in more than one way.

A Christmas to Remember by Natalia Schellhaas: With Oliver's help, Ari tracks down a hidden piece of her grandmother's history, and uncovers feelings Ari never thought to act upon.

The Christmas Kettle Caper by C.H. Sessums: Christmas festivities are swinging into high gear, but it's the arrival of a stranger connected to their past that has Jenny worried about J.D.'s tenuous sobriety. Will the ghosts of Christmas past threaten their chance for better days in 1939?

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Don't miss the Christmas Book Advent Calendar!


Image by Pixaline for Pixabay

Beginning on December 1st, I will be posting about one Christmas book a day, with info on giveaways and their sponsors as well. You won't want to miss the event!

Thursday, November 4, 2021

For my story in this collection, I borrowed from a little family tradition--Bubble Loaf for Christmas breakfast. My family had our big dinner on Christmas eve, then ate a huge breakfast on Christmas morning to fortify us. And then we ate leftovers the rest of the day so my mother didn't have to cook. (There were always plenty of leftovers. My mother came from the Southern tradition of cooks who would put enough food on the table to feed an army and then make a last-minute batch of biscuits just in case someone didn't get enough to eat.)

When I moved out of the house, I took a lot of my mother's Christmas treat recipes with me, in that little blue and yellow tin recipe box that all mothers of her genertion seemed to have. 

There was cranberry orange bread and chocolate chip banana bread and an insanely good pumpkin bread with golden raisins and walnuts. But I didn't learn about Bubble Loaf until both my parents were dead and I was on  my own to create my own traditions.

This recipe came from my sister's girlfriend and I've made it every Christmas for at least twenty years. The girlfriend moved on and my sister did too but Orange Bubble Loaf remained.

Orange Bubble Loaf

2 loaves frozen bread dough, thawed

1 stick unsalted butter, melted

1 cup granulated sugar

1 jar of dried orange peel, around 1.5 ounces

2 round 9-inch cake pans

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Combine the sugar and dried orange peel in a shallow bowl.

Cut the thawed bread dough into pieces about an inch square and then roll each square into a little ball.

Dip the dough balls into the melted butter, then roll in the sugar orange mixture until coated.

Place the “bubble” into the pan. 

Cover with a clean dish towel and set in a warm place until the dough has risen and doubled in volume.

Bake at 325 until golden brown. Allow to cool before serving.

If freezing, slightly under bake the bread  so that when the bubble loaf is reheated, it won’t get too toasty. 

One loaf’s worth of of dough “bubbles” will fit into one pan so you'll have one pan to keep and another to give away. 




We've been through the wars together...


My boxed set, Call of Magic, did not make the USA TODAY bestseller list. This was really disappointing, as we'd worked a year toward the goal. But if it was easy...everyone would be doing it.

Still it was a great experience to work with these writers.

#callofmagic #friendsforver