Welcome to my Friday bonus feature called Karen’s Killer Fixin’s **Author Special**!! Today, in lieu of one of my own recipes, I’m going to introduce you to a new author who will share one of her favorite recipes. Not only will you and I occasionally learn how to make something new and delicious, but we’ll get a chance to check out some wonderful authors. Introducing author, KAREN McCULLOUGH, and her favorite recipe for COFFEE CAKE!
BY KAREN McCULLOUGH
Kristie Sandford’s vacation is interrupted when a man jumps out in front of her car. She avoids hitting him, but when she stops to see if he’s hurt, he demands she help him escape from the people chasing him. Kristie has an odd “gift” – she occasionally gets warning messages, and she gets one saying he needs her help or he’ll die. Jason Hunter is an NC SBI (North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation) agent working on his own time searching for a friend, an investigative reporter who disappeared while tracking down rumors of corruption in the bureaucracy of a small mountain town. Jason is grateful to Kristie for rescuing him, but dubious when she insists she has to continue helping him. Kristie is attracted to Jason, but the edge of danger she senses in him reminds her too much of the abusive family she escaped as soon as she could.
Still, the message said he’d die if she didn’t help him, and the messages have been right before.
The sudden, sharp crack of a rifle shot, way too close, shattered the peace of a lovely June day.
Moments before, Kristie Sandford had been driving sedately and musing on camera angles and light as she reveled in the sun-drenched beauty of a back road in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Pink and blue wildflowers grew along the verge, just in front of shrubs in varying shades of green. The scent of honeysuckle drifted in the open window of the car.
Alarmed by the explosive noise, she pressed down on the Toyota’s brake pedal and scanned the area around her. Thick shrubbery limited visibility to only a few feet into their depths. The land rose above her on the right, but even when she bent her neck to look up the side of the hill, she could detect no sign of human presence. She hadn’t passed any parked vehicles recently, and only one had gone by in the other direction in the last ten minutes. The last house she’d seen was more than a mile back.
A second crack followed moments later. Hunters, maybe—an uneasy thought. Stray bullets from careless hunters killed people. Kristie slowed the car, although the frequent switchbacks on the steep, narrow mountain road already limited her speed.
She steered around the next tight curve, alert to the possibility of another shot. That attention probably saved the life of the man who darted out of the trees and dashed across the road directly ahead of her.
“Ohmigod.” She stomped on the brake. Thank heaven for anti-lock technology. The tires screeched on the pavement and almost lost traction.
The man stopped in the middle of the road and stared at her. His glance swung toward the trees from which he’d emerged, then back to her. What the hell was he doing? Did he have a death wish or was he just frozen by panic? He stood in the center of the highway, watching her bear down on him.
Karen McCullough is the author of more than a dozen published novels in the mystery, romantic suspense, and fantasy genres and has won numerous awards, including an Eppie Award for fantasy. She’s also been a four-time Eppie finalist, and a finalist in the Prism, Dream Realm, Rising Star, Lories, Scarlett Letter, and Vixen Awards contests. Her short fiction has appeared in several anthologies and numerous small press publications in the fantasy, science fiction, and romance genres. She has three children, three grandchildren and lives in Greensboro, NC, with her husband of many years.
Links to Karen’s website, blog, links, etc.
I hope you enjoy the recipe Karen is sharing today on Karen’s Killer Fixin’s. Happy Eating!
P.S. We’re at 348 recipes and counting with this posting. Hope you find some recipes you like. If this is your first visit, please check out past blogs for more Killer Fixin’s. In the right hand column menu, you can even look up past recipes by type. i.e. Desserts, Breads, Beef, Chicken, Soups, Author Specials, etc.
NOTE FROM KAREN: This is an easy but delicious cake that is perfect for when guests stop by for a quick chat or a cup of coffee. The recipe was handed down from my grandmother to my mother and thence to me. It works well for me, but others say that the topping sinks too much. It may take some experimenting to get it right, but it’s simple and delicious.
4 Tbsp melted butter
½ cup milk
1 cup flour
½ cup sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
Dash of salt
½ cup flour
Pinch of salt
Dash of nutmeg
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp melted butter
Mix together all the batter ingredients and spread in a 9 x 9 inch baking pan. Make topping by mixing topping ingredients together. (It will be dry and crumbly.) Place the topping on the uncooked batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan. It may settle as it cools.