I am a voracious reader!! I LOVE books!!!! All kinds of books!! And I am constantly reading and typically have more than 1 book going – usually a fiction, a nonfiction that I am not racing to finish, and at least 1 cookbook- and I read both physical books and ebooks. I am a librarian and even when I don’t have my own library I rely heavily on a public library to keep me supplied (mine has ebooks which is AMAZING when I finish a book on a Sunday night or holiday and am DESPERATE for another book) because I can try out a variety and don’t feel the weight of commitment purchasing a book gives me. So what does this rambling have to do with a food blog you are asking? When I read I find myself thinking of food, either because it is a book that includes recipes (and I’m not just talking about cookbooks) or something about it (setting, characters are always eating a specific food, etc.) just leads me to food. Long story short, I’ve decided to devote several posts a month to combining my 2 loves- food and books. I will give a quick review of a book and either make something from it or inspired by it.
For my first review I decided to go with something obvious, a book that contains recipes and I figured a book set in a place called the Cookie Jar couldn’t steer me wrong. MISTAKE!! I was extremely disappointed by the book but the recipe was ok. The book is Double Fudge Brownie Murder by Joanne Fluke and it is number 18 in the Hannah Swensen Series. Quick summary- Hannah owns a cookie store/bakery in a small town in Minnesota, her family is very involved in her life, she is unmarried in her 30’s with 2 ‘beaus’ (Norman, a dentist, and Mike, a police detective) who have both asked her to marry them but do nothing more than occasionally chastely kiss, and she is always stumbling over dead bodies. Oh, did I mention the beaus are friends and frequently they all spend time together. For the first few books in the series you could get past this and they were light, enjoyable, ‘cozy mysteries’ (think Murder She Wrote) but it has been YEARS and come on already!! Anyway, Hannah discovers the judge in her case (the previous book had details about this) murdered minutes before her trial starts and spends th book trying to figure out who did it. Along the way she tries out all sorts of cookies, and breads, and other stuff and the recipes are included. In the end she figures it out and comes to a decision about the men in her life. I do not recommend this book, it took me days to read and I normally read this series in a few hours but do recommend the 1st book in the series Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder if you are looking for a light, easy read with lots of cookies or a book for a tween/teen reader that needs something different without violence, sex, or language.
There were over 25 recipes in this book and many of them had unusual ingredients, ketchup in cookies. I made Applesauce Bread because it sounded like something for fall and had normal ingredients. The recipe was easy and included lots of notes for adaptations. I chose to make them as muffins and it made a lot. The house smelt like cinnamon as they were baking. The muffins themselves were moist and reminiscent of Snickerdoodles. If you want to try them BORROW the book from your library and just look at the recipes.
Hope you have a Sweet Morning!