Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Recovering from Conference

I attended a wonderful Love is Murder ( conference in Rosemont over the weekend where I spoke on 4 panels, went to a masters class with Tess Gerritsen, saw many new great police procedural and cozy authors and signed up for a new writing editing project.
But when to do it? Snow has been literally dumping steadily in Chicago for about a week. Many folks couldn't get in to the conference, and now it is at the point where if we don't have to go out, we don't. Serious cabin fever time, folks, and it's lucky I have my 300 cookbooks to keep me and my son company. It's impossible to concentrate with the family at home on top of each other, but I'm getting more creative about that. On one of the panels where I spoke Friday on getting an agent, a person next to me had written 9 novels in 2 years. I was feeling pretty lazy!
Last week I made some terrible peanut butter 'fluffs' that weren't... It was the old ugly meringue situation rearing its head with me again. You might wonder why I keep trying meringue recipes, but I can't help it!
This is from the Cookies: Food Writers Favorites 1991 collection from Mothers Against Drunk Driving. If you see this one in an antique store at any time, snap it up. Many easy favorites are in here. If I can do them, you know they are easy!
Enjoy the 'No-Cook Chocolate-Peanut Butter Yums':
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 box (16 oz.) confectioners' sugar (I have no idea how to measure this from my bag - I just dumped a bunch in...)
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon butter, divided
1 jar (28 oz.) chunky peanut butter (didn't have it - used smooth)
1 package (12 oz.) semisweet chocolate morsels
Combine brown sugar, confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup butter and peanut butter; mix well. (Unless your kitchen needs a really good cleaning, don't do this with the mixer...) Pat mixture into an ungreased 15X10X1 inch jelly roll pan. Smooth top of mixture. Use a spatula, not your hands, which will become increasingly gummy and useless.
Melt chocolate morsels and 1 tblsp. butter in microwave. Spread on top of peanut butter mixture.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set chocolate. Before cutting, allow to com to room temperature so chocolate will not crack. Store in refrigerator.
Seriously - no one can wait that long to eat it. Who cares if it's cracked?
I'm reading several things at once as I'm keyed up from the conference and restlesss. Plus I'm both teaching an online class which I love (welcome folks) and taking one where the editor is actually requiring we do some reading! My favorite right now is Sizzle and Burn by Jayne Ann Krentz, but I met several lovely Chicago authors at LIM and will be commenting on their books.
Stay warm and snow free!

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