Sara Daniel Romance Author: December 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013

#MondayMunchies - Candy Cane Cookies #recipe


My favorite holiday recipe is for Candy Cane Cookies. I love these festive cookies for their hint of almond flavor and the crushed candy canes on the top. I only make them once a year, and I double the recipe below.

I will warn you to make sure that you only use peppermint candy canes (or peppermint candies). A couple years ago, I went around our family Christmas tree, plucking off all the red and white candy canes. I crushed them into the topping, which I then sprinkled onto the cookies. Well, you can imagine my dismay when I took a bite and discovered mixed in with the refreshing mint flavor was also the not-so-refreshing taste of watermelon candy. Yes, unbeknownst to me, one (or more) of the candy canes I crushed was watermelon flavored, not mint, and I can NOT in good conscience recommend it to anyone! This year I used round peppermint candies to ensure there was no mix-up!

½ cup butter, softened
½ cup shortening
1 cup powdered sugar
1 egg
1½ t. almond extract
1 t. vanilla
2 ½ cups flour
1 t. salt
½ - 1 t. red food coloring
1 cup crushed candy canes or peppermint candy

Mix butter, shortening and powdered sugar. Mix in egg, almond extract and vanilla. Continue mixing as you add in flour and salt.

Divide dough in half. Place in separate bowls. Blend food coloring into one bowl of dough.

Shape one tablespoon of dough from each color into a rope. Place ropes side by side on a cookie sheet. Press together lightly and twist. Curve down the top third to form a candy cane.

Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minute.

Immediately after removing from oven, sprinkle cookies with crushed peppermint candy. Wait until cookies are cool to prevent breakage when removing them from the pan.

Enjoy the tastes and smells of the season. Happy holidays!

Monday, December 16, 2013

#Monday Munchies - Celebrate the 2 year anniversary of Mr. Forever with a scone #recipe

To commemorate the 2 year anniversary of the release of Mr. Forever, I'm reprising my scones recipe which was also published in the free Passionate Cooks cookbook. Enjoy! --Sara


Scones are a specialty of The Scot's Mansion in my novel Mr. Forever. Olivia Wells makes plain scones and several flavors of the day, and serves them with jam and hot tea. All her guests rave about them. Then Dr. Caleb Paden shows up. He insists that scones are dry and heavy and not to his liking at all.

Well, if he thinks that, he certainly hasn't tried her scones. Ethan Paden knows exactly what his brother is missing out on. The moment he bites into one of Olivia's scones, he is enraptured. He dubs her a "scone sorceress" and asks to marry her on the spot.

I can't guarantee instant marriage proposals and a sorceress-level following, but these scones are sure to inspire devotion from all who try them. And hey, if you've been waiting for years for a marriage proposal that hasn't come yet, they're certainly worth a shot.

The Scone Sorceress's Almond-Poppy Seed Scones
1 cup flour
3 tbsp. sugar
1 ½ tsp. poppy seeds
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
¼ cup unsalted butter
3 tbsp. sour cream
1 egg
1 tsp. almond extract
1 tbsp. milk
Powdered sugar
Sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 400° F.

Chill butter and cut into pieces. Combine dry ingredients in bowl. Add butter pieces. Use pastry cutter to mix butter and dry ingredients, until mixture is coarse.

In a small bowl, combine sour cream, egg, almond extract and milk. Pour into dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula.

Finish mixing by kneading the dough with your hands. Pat into a 5-inch circle.

Set circle on cookie sheet and use a pizza cutter to cut into 8 triangle wedges. Spread pieces apart.

Bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Dip warm scones into powdered sugar and sprinkle with sliced almonds.

Enjoy!

(optional but highly recommended) Serve to the person you love. Watch them kneel in front of you. Savor their vow of love and devotion. Accept proposal. Live happily ever after.

The discovery of a secret baby threatens Caleb's professional reputation. Falling for the woman who loves this baby would ruin him.

Marriage therapist Caleb Paden has just found out he has a son from a one-night stand, making a mockery of his core belief of stable relationships--"friendship above all physical encounters." On his way to take the child for a paternity test, a snowstorm leaves him stranded with single mom Olivia Wells, who blames his advice for breaking up her marriage. Caleb finds himself fighting the urge for the most basic of physical encounters. Olivia would like nothing more than to destroy the career he spent a lifetime building, but her maternal instincts draw her to help Caleb bond with his child. Soon, she finds herself falling for both of them. Nowhere in any of his advice does Caleb have an answer for how to make a relationship work if he loses his heart to love.

To read an excerpt from Mr. Forever please click a vendor's name.
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Friday, December 13, 2013

#FridayFriends - New Release Czech Mate by @sloanetaylor2

Discover the passion that is a Sloane Taylor story with the hot release of CZECH MATE

Pink boa and red stilettos…anything goes with Armani.

Musa Publishing
Erotic Contemporary Romance

Life isn't easy for American Lacey Blake when she’s stranded in Prague dressed like a dolled up hooker and nowhere to go. The cash-strapped American, boasting a pink boa and red stilettos that would make any working girl jealous, is saved by a staid giant in classic Armani.

Dragan Petrovic worked hard to shed the stigma of his youth and what his mother endured to put food in his belly. Now that he is a success, Dragan is determined his 5-star hotel will retain its unblemished reputation and no apprentice prostitute will launch her career in his lobby.

But one look in Lacey’s eyes proves there is more to the desirable woman than a micro mini and a push up bra. The urge to protect her compels Dragan to suggest an unconventional plan that stirs deep desires and alters their lives forever.

EXCERPT:
Lacey lifted out a teetering stack of silky looking items. Lingerie? A light blue bra encased with what must be rhinestones slid to the floor, quickly followed by matching bikini panties.

“What are these?” Dragan knelt next to her. Blood pounded through his veins as he captured the delicate cloth in his hands.

“My undies.” She continued to rummage, spilling more silken items onto the carpet.

He lifted an eyebrow. “Uncomfortable?”

“Surprisingly, no.” She giggled. Her creamy skin took on a rosy glow as she dipped her head lower to the suitcase. “Damn it, where is it?”

A vision of her dressed only in the intimate garments and those sexy high heels strapped to her ankles flooded his mind, sending jolts of electricity south.

His stiff cock, which was its normal posture in her presence, swelled larger as she walked toward him. The throbbing head was anxious to be deep inside her and wrapped in her wet heat. The tips of her hard nipples shoved against the silky fabric of her bra. Their outline was a beacon to his aching member. His fingers itched to caress the soft mounds that rose over the miniscule rhinestone studded cups. He wanted to tongue her hard nipples Erotic sensations streaked through him as he imagined mounting her, and sliding his cock between their firm flesh.

She stepped closer, drawing his attention lower to her shapely hips. He was mesmerized by their sway, the movement seductive, sensual, compelling him to taste her.

The clear gems sprinkled across her sheer panties twinkled in the dim light. He licked his dry lips. The burning desire to kiss the lacey V at the apex of her thighs, suckle her clit through the thin material, and graze a finger along her folds brought sweat to his brow.

She slid the bra straps down her shoulders. His heart thudded, banging against his ribcage. He stood—

“Earth to Vic. Come in, Vic.”

A hand shook his shoulder and slammed him into the present.

“Um, you might want to let go, big time.”

He glanced at his hands wadding her undergarments into a knot. SouloĹžit. Fuck, what the hell could he say and not appear an old lecher? “I apologize. My mind must have taken a short vacation.”

“Yeah, right.” She laughed. “Don’t even think I’ll buy that one, big guy.”

Dragan smiled. Even in a dire situation she still enjoyed life enough to make amusing retorts. A wonderful asset more women should embrace. And even though she owned the sexiest lingerie he ever had the pleasure to fondle, Lacey Blake was not a whore. The lady had style. But time was short and he needed to move forward and not dwell on her attributes.

He pursed his lips and was not sure how to best measure Lacey’s shapely body without appearing to molest her, especially after making a fool of himself over her delicate things. He did not trust himself to hold back and not wrap her in his arms and kiss her until she begged him to make love to her.

Make love to her?

Obviously that thought was formed wrong. Or was it?
 ____________________________________________________



Tuesday, December 10, 2013

#TuesdayToolbox - Favorite Romances that Influenced My Writing

I have always been drawn to relationship stories, happily ever after, and romance. I was first sucked into the Sweet Valley High series in middle school and always rooted for the good girl to win. A book I still remember from my early teen years is Dial L For Love by Marian Woodruff. In this teen romance, the girl began dating a socially awkward but popular football player who had his best friend call her pretending to be him, and the girl and the best friend ended up falling for each other. Decades later, I still remember the heart-wrenching emotion I felt while reading that story.

My first adult romance books were Johanna Lindsey historicals that I read late at night when my mother thought I was sleeping. Soon after, I moved on to contemporary category romances by Nora Roberts, Elizabeth Lowell, and Sandra Brown. I loved the emotional ride each author delivered in every book, and I lived vicariously through the heroines, experiencing love and heartbreak as they did. When I write, I hope to capture even a portion of the pure, raw emotion those stories inspired in me.

My all-time favorite hero is Kenny Karmody from Suzanne Brockmann’s Out of Control. That mix of sweet, vulnerable, tough, fearless, and irreverent made me fall head-over-heels in love in a way I never have before or since with any other book character. Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ First Lady is probably my all-time favorite book because every single character captivated me on every single page. When I finished that book for the first time, I turned to page one and immediately started reading it again.


Contemporary romances with memorable characters and pure, heartfelt emotion are the stories I love. They’ve stuck with me through the years, influenced the core of my writing, and are now the types of books I too write in the hopes they will to
uch others in the same way.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

#MySexySaturday - Holiday Shopping for the CEO

It’s that time of year again, where we’re trying to find the perfect gift for the special people in our lives, and if that special someone happens to be a CEO who has everything, what the heck do you buy for him or her? I mean, they probably already have everything, and let’s be honest anything that has a chance of impressing a mega-successful CEO is waaayyyyy beyond my budget.

So, I did a bit of research and hunted down Willow Jeffries, a massage therapist who specializes in giving massages to CEOs who are too busy to leave their offices to get to the spa. Naturally, in her professional opinion, she considers a gift certificate for an office massage to be a good bet. But if you’re the type who sees a white collar guy and automatic heads for the men’s clothing department, here are Willow’s personal thoughts on the subject (as excerpted from Captivating the CEO):

Colin set aside his earpiece and laptop, then crossed the room and shoved his arms back into his shirt sleeves. After buttoning his crisp white shirt, he looped a blue tie around his neck.
She didn’t recall him ever wearing another color in her presence. “Are all your ties blue, or do you only own one?”
“I change at least once a day, sometimes twice.” Opening an oversized cabinet door, he gestured to several suit bags, a half dozen white shirts and a dozen blue ties. Some ties sported a muted stripe, others a subtle paisley design.
Without staring at them lined next to each other, she wouldn’t have discerned a difference. “Well, Christmas shopping for you will be easy. White shirt, blue tie. Check.” Of course, if she bought him a gift, she’d attempt to rock his wardrobe with a tie-dye shirt or, even better, Rudolph boxers with a prominent, glowing red nose.
While winding his tie and securing it in a snug knot against his starched, buttoned collar, he cocked an eyebrow at her. “Do you buy presents for clients?”
“If the mood strikes.” Unable to hold his gaze without leading him on, she shrugged and glanced at the clock above the treadmill. “Anyway, you’re not a client at the moment. Your session ended two minutes ago, and you don’t have any upcoming sessions booked, so I’m on personal time.”
“That sounds promising.” He winked. “How much personal time do you want to devote to me?”

So it’s official. Next time I have a CEO on my gift life, I’m going to buy him Rudolph boxers, and I’m definitely going to enjoy that glowing red nose! What fun things are you shopping for this year?


He only plans for the future. She might not have a future.

When live-for-the-moment massage therapist Willow Jeffries bursts into Colin Vanderhayden's office, she makes it her mission to loosen up the future-focused CEO, knowing each moment of the present is too precious to waste. Despite her immediate attraction, the only future she can offer is one full of heartache.

The last thing Colin needs is a flighty woman messing up his carefully-constructed plans, but her heavenly massages and addictive personality prove hard to resist. But he has no idea how sick she is.


No longer able to ignore her life-threatening medical condition, Willow slips away to spare Colin a miserable future with her. Is Colin willing to sacrifice his well-laid future plans to get Willow back?

Monday, December 2, 2013

#CyberMonday #ebook Deals from @MusaPublishing and More!


Yep, you read that right. Cyber Monday has hit Musa Publishing. All books purchased from the site are 50% off. It's a great way to scoop up your favorite authors, and if you haven't started or need to get caught up on the Wiccan Haus series, they're all half off too!


Musa also has a free read going up each day for a 13 Days of Christmas special.

I also have my own Cyber Monday sale going on at All Romance ebooks. Haley's Man is currently 50% off.

What great deals to load up your e-reader or the e-reader you're gifting to that special someone in your life! Happy shopping!