Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sconed for Murder?

by Evelyn David

Actually it's Zoned for Murder, but we're going to talk about scones too!

You are what you eat. We've heard that phrase a million times, and it was only in writing this blog that we discovered that while we associate it with the back to the farm, organic food movement of the 1960s, its roots are from Anthelme Brillat-Savarin who wrote in 1826: "Dis-moi ce que tu manges, je te dirai ce que tu es." [Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are].

So we're not sure what it tells you about Maggie Brooks, intrepid reporter and reluctant sleuth, that she eats haggis, a Scottish delicacy that involves the stomach, liver, and heart of a sheep, mixed with some oats. Hmmmm. Chris said we could add a recipe to our blog, but we've decided to pass on Haggis. It's a delicacy that Maggie likes, but neither half of Evelyn David chooses to indulge.

But it does give you a clue about the lead character of our new mystery, Zoned for Murder. She's adventuresome, despite the fact that her life has taken an unexpected, difficult turn. She's not afraid to tackle something new, even if she needs to find the self-confidence she once had when she lived in Scotland and indulged in the country's famous dish. She's smart, sexy, and determined, although she's just rediscovering those aspects of herself.

Here's a quick synopsis: Former Newsweek reporter Maggie Brooks has two kids, a dead husband, a mortgage to pay, and a lot of competition when she tries to get back into the shrinking newspaper business. Landing a job with a local paper, she's bored to tears covering bake sales and Little League games. But when a developer tries to build an outlet mall in a neighboring town, what starts out as potentially a great clip for her resume, suddenly turns dangerous and ugly. Someone will do anything to block the mall's construction. Dirty money, nasty politics, and shady land deals abound as Maggie pursues the scoop that might jumpstart her career. When murder is added to the mix, she realizes that meeting her deadline might be the last thing she ever does. Read Maggie's byline as she rebuilds her career, dips her toes into a shark-filled dating pool, and investigates a small New York town Zoned for Murder.

Haggis isn't our cup of tea, but to go with a new mystery and some afternoon brew, why not try some strawberry scones, courtesy of The Barefoot Contessa. They're yummy and easy to make.

Strawberry Scones

4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
3/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
4 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup cold heavy cream
3/4 cup small-diced dried strawberries
1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons water or milk, for egg wash

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine 4 cups of flour, 2 tablespoons sugar, baking powder, and salt. Blend in the cold butter at the lowest speed and mix until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Combine the eggs and heavy cream and quickly add them to the flour and butter mixture. Combine until just blended. Toss the strawberries with 1 tablespoon of flour, add them to the dough, and mix quickly. The dough may be a bit sticky.

Dump the dough out onto a well-floured surface and be sure it is well combined. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough 3/4-inch thick. You should see lumps of butter in the dough. Cut into squares with a 4-inch plain or fluted cutter, and then cut them in half diagonally to make triangles. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Brush the tops with egg wash. Sprinkle with sugar and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the outsides are crisp and the insides are fully baked.



Win a Free Copy - Leave a comment on this blog for a chance to win a free download of Zoned for Murder from Smashwords (all e-book formats are available there). One winner will be picked at random. Be sure to leave a contact email in your comment or drop us an email at so we know how to send you the 100% off coupon code for the download.

The author of Murder Off the Books, Murder Takes the Cake, Riley Come Home, Moonlighting at the Mall and The Brianna Sullivan Mysteries e-book series, Evelyn David is the pseudonym for Marian Edelman Borden and Rhonda Dossett.

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The author of Murder Off the Books, Murder Takes the Cake, Riley Come Home, Moonlighting at the Mall and The Brianna Sullivan Mysteries e-book series, Evelyn David is the pseudonym for Marian Edelman Borden and Rhonda Dossett.

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Murder Off the Books
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Zoned for Murder
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Evelyn David said...

Thanks Chris for hosting us today!

Melissa, Mudpie and Angel Truffles (Mochas, Mysteries and Meows) said...

Those strawberry scones sound divine!!! Would love to read Zoned for Murder :)

Kuzlin said...

I love the Brianna series, so I can't wait to try this one.

The Stiletto Gang said...

Thanks so much Melissa and Kuzlin. We can assure you that both the scones and Zoned are good :-)

Evelyn David