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Hello and welcome to Romance Recipes!  Every Thursday I will introduce you to a new author and a new recipe!  Two of my favorite things!  This week I am bringing you author, Tory Michaels, her newly released book Blood-Mage Rising, and her recipe for oatmeal raisin pecan cookies.  Please join me in welcoming Tory and savor her recipe for oatmeal cookies while reading about her book!

Oatmeal Raisin Pecan Cookies – from the Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network (http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/raisin-pecan-oatmeal-cookies-recipe/index.html). I’ve made these once and Oh My God. They are INCREDIBLE! Soak the raisins before you stick them in though. Just 10 minutes or so in a bowl of water should work fine. I used golden raisins.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups pecans
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed  
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins

Directions

-Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

-Place the pecans on a sheet pan and bake for 5 minutes, until crisp. Set aside to cool. Chop very coarsely.

-In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla.

-Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt together into a medium bowl. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Add the oats, raisins, and pecans and mix just until combined.

-Using a small ice-cream scoop or a tablespoon, drop 2-inch mounds of dough onto sheet pans lined with parchment paper. Flatten slightly with a damp hand. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly browned. Transfer the cookies to a baking rack and cool completely.

Blurb: 

In the eighty years since the Great Awakening, humans and non-humans have lived side by side, relatively at peace.  In an attack that leaves his wife dead, Jordan MacNaught is caught up in the start of a war meant to turn the other races against the vampires. He knows beyond a doubt the vampires of yesteryear are not involved in the attacks. They’re all dead, except for him.

Jordan asks for Chris Javert’s help in hunting those who murdered his wife. She’s no stranger to hunting vampires. After all, she nearly destroyed Jordan when she ended the reign of his Aristocrats in Europe two hundred years ago.

Despite doubts about Jordan’s innocence, Chris joins forces with him, the man who once tried to kill her, to save the inter-species pace from the new Aristocrats before war consumes them all.

Excerpt:

Her temper, quick to flare and to calm, settled before her computer booted up. Typing up a draft of the contract she intended to put in front of Jordan took considerably longer. Her mind kept wandering. This wasn’t a cookie-cutter contract. A quick check at the clock as the draft printed showed four in the afternoon.

Per the senses she kept sharp, given her unwelcome house guest, he had remained on the second floor the entire time. Chris gathered the last sheet off her printer and skimmed it one more time, looking for any obvious typos. She only found her law degree, obtained in the 60s during the civil rights movement, useful for business these days and took pride that she’d never set foot in a courtroom. Let the ambulance chasers be “for the people” as the commercials went. She kept her bar certifications current only because she didn’t want to retake the exam if she decided to practice as an attorney some day.

The smell of blood hit her in the face as she crested the top of the stairs. She breathed deeply, indulging in a momentary fantasy. Maybe he’d done her a favor and died, bleeding out. Unlikely, but a pleasant possibility. She’d happily clean up the mess.

“Jordan?”

“What?”

So much for that slim hope. He sounded distracted, voice coming from the cracked open second door to her left. No big surprise, he’d taken over the second master suite. “Why do I smell blood?”

“I got hungry.”

“So help me God, if you ordered take-out and ate the delivery person ….”

Half afraid of what she might find, she pushed open the door. Relief washed through her. He lay stretched out atop the black and white handcrafted quilt, studying a sketch. A glass rested on the bedside table, sheen of blood coating the inside. In the interim, he’d traded the ventilated suit for black pants and a crisp, button-down shirt.

He glanced up. “There is no evidence that I have been involved in any illegalities, least of all murder, in decades. I’m not so lazy, nor careless, that I would do something like that. Certainly not whilst on holiday and a guest in your home.”

An unwelcome guest. Typical Jordan, “no evidence”.

From her vantage point, she could see the upper portion of his chest since he’d left the top couple of buttons down. Just enough to spy the faint burn scars, but no sign of other injuries. Nice chest, too, firm pecs with no trace of body hair, just like she liked in a man.

“Fine, fine. I have a draft for you to look at.”

“Excellent. I’ll take a look in a bit when I’m finished.”

Despite telling herself she didn’t care, she craned her neck to get a better look at his drawing. Expecting a piece of jewelry, she instead saw her face. “What are you working on?”

“This?” He turned it around for her to see clearly. He’d drawn her at a window, looking out over a drop-off. The view from the window reminded her of Dover. She’d visited the famed cliffs just once, during World War II, while waiting for Dee to get back from rescuing her niece Sarah from France. Jordan had caught up with her there.

“Since when do you sketch people?”

“I like to draw, and you make an interesting subject. My art comes in many forms. Usually though, when I do portraiture, it comes out flat. I wanted to see if you would be different.”

Weird. Better to just leave that alone and chart a wide course around it. “Whatever, man. Hurry to look over that. I want you out.”

Jordan turned the sketchbook face down and sat up. “Didn’t we already discuss this? I’m staying here.”

“You said you were. I can’t do what I do with someone standing over me. You’ve got the agreement, and we’ll sign when we’re ready. But ….” She trailed off, not sure how to finish that without sounding petulant.

“But what? It really makes you uncomfortable to have me here?”

“Yes!”

“Why is that?” He cupped his chin in his hand and watched her. “You’re safe enough. Once everything’s signed and sealed, I can’t kill you without a warning period. I have no interest in doing so anyway.”

Am I really sure vampires can’t have aneurysms? Chris rubbed her temples. Whether he could kill her or not was irrelevant. What if someone dropped by? How could she explain him being there? Everyone knew she despised him. Liar, you just don’t want to deal with the sex thing. “I ….”

When she glanced over at him, a lean jungle predator laid out on her guest bed, the words stuck in her throat. He represented sex, chocolate and poison, all rolled into delicious packaging. She hated the fine line she walked when dealing with him. If she didn’t watch it, she’d get bit in the ass and not in the fun way either.

The mischievous gleam in his eyes, since he knew she resented their connection, pushed her over the edge. They had both the time and location. “Oh screw it. This Aristocrat mess could take forever. I can’t have this hanging over my head for the next six months. Let’s get it over with.”

She stalked over to the bed, and, catching his face between her hands, she kissed him, hard.

Buy links:

http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Mage-Rising-The-Dream-Walker-ebook/dp/B007TDNNQE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334222754&sr=8-1

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Mage-Rising-The-Dream-Walker-ebook/dp/B007TDNNQE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334222801&sr=8-1

http://www.evernightpublishing.com/blood-mage-rising-by-tory-michaels/

I have a little boy who just started kindergarten(Shrimp, the boy, etc), twin baby girls (aka the Shrimpettes, Twin A & Twin B, etc) , a husband and a beautiful Siberian Husky named Mika. We live in Jacksonville, Florida now, having moved back a few months after spending time in Denver.

My day job is for a well-established law firm that focuses on corporate law. It makes for a nice change from the five+ years spent doing personal injury law, and continues the learning I started while in Denver working corporate securities law.

Find Tory:

http://www.torymichaels.com/

http://www.twitter.com/torymichaels

http://www.facebook.com/authortorymichaels

http://www.facebook.com/thedreamwalkerwar

Thanks for joining us today for another Romance Recipes!  I hope you join us again next week for another new author and recipe!

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