SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY
Writing Girls Series #4
I am in desperate need of your advice. The love of my life is the publisher of The
List and each Tuesday appears, filled with gossip and scandal, offering job
postings and matches for the lovelorn--and most enticing of all, telling the
tales and selling the wares a more modest publication wouldn't touch. It seems she
is hell bent on printing every one of my peccadilloes and hangs out my dirty
laundry week after week. I do not know
how to win back her trust. Desperate to
for any grand gesture to prove that my love for her has always and will be
Barron Benton Gray---LORD GRAY’S LIST by Maggie Robinson.
Dear Lord Gray,
I shall sheepishly attempt to offer you advice. You see, I am also guilty of publishing romantic secrets in a popular
publication. In an effort to win the attentions and affections of my employer,
Mr. Knightly, I requested tips from the readers of my advice column. And then…I
tried them. And wrote about them. Eventually Mr. Knightly realized my scheme…At
this point I cannot disclose much more and still maintain my modesty! London
As for you, good sir, you may try hiding all her pens and paper. Or I suggest you really give the love of your life something to write about, like how noble, considerate, charitable and romantic you are (instead of your peccadilloes and dirty laundry). In time she and her readers will see that your actions prove your love. How could she resist?!
Annabelle from Seducing Mr. Knightly
Reprinted with permission from The London Weekly
I’m asking authors to share a favorite recipe with readers. It can be one you make all year long that friends and family rave about or a holiday recipe tradition.
All the best,
This author (Maya, not Annabelle) can never, ever resist my grandmother’s (and mother’s) recipe for Old-Fashioned Chocolate Cake. You can find the story and the recipe here: http://www.mariasfarmcountrykitchen.com/recipe-old-fashioned-chocolate-cake/
OLD-FASHIONED CHOCOLATE CAKE
Maria'S Farm Country Kitchen
2¼ cups sifted flour—organic cake flour, if you can find it
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter
2½ cups brown sugar, firmly packed
3 one-ounce squares unsweetened chocolate
½ cup sour milk or buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water (the secret to its moistness!)
(Note: You can also try substituting the boiling water with boiling coffee. My friend Mark Kintzel made me a cake once that tasted much like this one, but he used coffee instead of water. It was his mother’s recipe.)
1. Start the oven at 350 or 375 degrees. Grease the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch cake pans (I use only two), and dust with flour. Sift the flour, measure it carefully, and sift it again with the baking soda and salt. (Tip from the magazine: Sift the flour once onto wax paper. Fill the measuring cup to slightly overflowing, cut off the excess to make level, and dump it into the sifter again with the soda and salt.)
2. Cream, or work, the butter in a bowl with your hands until it’s soft and airy. Then add the sugar a little at a time, and continue creaming until fluffy and light. Add the unbeaten eggs, one at a time. Beat the batter hard after the addition of each egg (it’s OK to use a fork or a spoon).
3. Put the chocolate in a measuring cup and melt over boiling water. When melted, add to the batter. Use a scraper to get every bit of melted chocolate from the sides of the cup. Mix thoroughly.
4. Sift one-third of the flour into the batter, stir in well. Add half of the sour milk or buttermilk and stir slightly. Repeat, ending with the flour.
5. Mix in the vanilla extract and the boiling water.
6. Pour batter into greased cake pans and don’t be alarmed at the thinness of the batter!
7. Bake 25 to 30 minutes.
8. Remove from the oven and turn the cake pans upside down to release the cakes onto a rack to cool.
9. When cool, spread the frosting (see below) between the layers and pile it high on top of your cake. Cover the sides. Sprinkle the top with shaved bitter chocolate (or not—we like it without, too!)
Whipped Cream Frosting
You can make this with or without the cocoa. We prefer it without.
1½ cups heavy cream
¼ cup sugar (I use powdered)
2 Tablespoons cocoa
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Mix (do not WHIP!) all ingredients in a bowl. Set in your refrigerator to chill for 2 hours at least. Longer is OK. Then beat until mixture is so thick it holds its shape and will stand in peaks. Whipping with an old-fashioned hand mixer takes 10 to 15 minutes, and is good exercise for the arms.
Mom tip: It took me years to understand that you simply can’t frost a cake when it’s still hot. It will break apart and crumble into the frosting. Patience—in cooking, baking, and in life—is sometimes hard to learn, but often worth the effort. However, I still have to work on it!
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Today, Annabelle sat between Owens and Grenville. Knightly narrowed his eyes—was Owens the Nodcock? How else to explain why Annabelle sat beside him, and touched his had when he leaned over to whisper something in her ear? Something that made her blush and smile.
“What the devil is going on?” He asked, irritated, and itching to put his fist through the wall. Or into Owens’s jaw. “No one answered. “
Swift, why are you over thee?” Miss.