Friday, September 14, 2012

Friday Recipes: Sweet and Seasoned

From Nine Naughty Novelist Kelly Jamieson

In my book Power Shift, Regan’s friend Jelana gives her a big bunch of fresh basil when she visits her. Regan makes pesto with it and then plans a meal for her and Gabe using it, tossing it with some pasta and spooning some over grilled chicken breasts, served with slices of fresh tomato. I love making this in the summer with basil I grow myself in my big pot of herbs on my deck.


What you need:

2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and quartered
½ tsp salt
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
½ cup toasted pine nuts
¾ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2/3 cup olive oil

What to do:

Combine the garlic and salt in food processor and blend to a fine paste. Add the basil leaves and process to a puree. Add the pine nuts and Parmesan, and blend. With the machine running, pour the olive oil through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream and mix well. The finished pesto should be the consistency of mayonnaise.

Keeps refrigerated for up to three months. I also freeze it to use in winter.

This is good over pasta, of course. I like to add freshly shelled peas in the summer, and some extra toasted pine nuts. It’s also good on chicken, as Regan plans in Power Shift – grill chicken breasts and top with a big spoonful of pesto when they’re done.

Power Shift

Gabe's lifestyle as a Master Dom is leaving him empty and cold. Everything else in his life seems to be falling apart too. Taking a break from the BDSM scene seems like a good idea — until he meets the perfect submissive.

Reagan has started a new life as a strong, independent woman. The last thing she wants is to be trapped in another controlling relationship. Letting a dominant man like Gabe into her life could cost her everything she's worked so hard for. But Reagan sees the emotions Gabe is keeping locked up inside, and somehow she knows how to unlock those feelings.

Gabe is determined to never lose control, show weakness, or reveal the secrets he's hiding . But the lust he shares with Reagan breaks through his walls. Faced with a bleak, lonely future or shattering those barriers permanently, he must somehow find the strength to let himself be vulnerable so he can experience the joy and sweetness of love.

Read an excerpt/Buy Power Shift

Guest Author Crystal Jordan


What you need:

3 cups sliced strawberries (started out as a 1 lb. carton)
1 cup sugar
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 tbsp candied ginger (optional)
2 half-pint jars (optional)

Okay, maybe it's not that sexy, but the ginger in the jam makes it a little hot. If you like it sweet, you can leave the ginger out.

This recipe was my maiden voyage into jam making. So, if I can do it, you can too. I got the original instructions from Portland Preserve here:

Note from my boyfriend: You want to use an organic lemon because pesticides get absorbed into the peel, and you need to use the zest in this recipe.

Note from me: You don't have to use jars for this if you don't have them. Putting this in a bowl is fine too. For the sake of the recipe, I'll assume you have new jars. This recipe makes about 1 pint jar, or as you can see in the picture, 2 half-pint jars. I kept one and gave the other to my Grams. She loved it!

What to do:

1) Preheat your oven to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. Put your (washed and clean) jars, lids, and bands on a cookie sheet in the oven for at least 10 minutes. Don't even open the oven during this time. Turn off the oven, but leave everything inside so it stays warm while you make the jam. Hot jam in cold jars=broken glass. 

2) Combine strawberries, sugar, ginger, lemon juice and lemon zest in a pan on the stove. Bring everything to a boil, stirring constantly until it reaches jam-like consistency. It took about 10 minutes for me.

3) Pull the jars out of the oven (use pot holders, they're hot!) and pour or ladle in the jam mixture. Wipe any spillage off the jar rims so the lids can seal.

4) Screw the lids on tight and flip the jars upside down on a cooling rack for about 24 hours. This should give the jars time to seal and the jam time to set. Resist the urge to shake or mess with the jars (the hardest part for me).
That's it! Put your jam in the fridge and enjoy it within the next week or two.
If you want instructions on how to process jam jars for long-term storage, Martha Stewart has a good overview here (though the actual recipe comes from one of her housekeepers, Gretchen Sweet):

Have fun with your hot and sexy jam! I enjoyed learning how to make this, and my boyfriend has definitely enjoyed eating most of it. I think next time we need separate jars. Mine!

Crystal Jordan is originally from California, but has lived all over the United States. Currently, she serves as a librarian at a university in her home state, and she writes paranormal, contemporary, futuristic, and erotic romance. Her publishers have included Samhain Publishing, Ellora's Cave, Kensington Aphrodisia, and Harlequin Spice Briefs.


1 comment:

PG Forte said...

Mmm. These both sound great!