Friday, 26 May 2017

A Quick Catch Up!

 
I'm working on two books at the moment - books 7 & 8. They're at very different stages: Book 7 is very nearly ready to be released (more details soon) and Book 8 is in the planning stages.
 
 
I'm reading A Year at the Star and Sixpence by Holly Hepburn. It was originally released in smaller parts, but I'm too impatient and had to buy the complete collection to read all at once!
 
 
I haven't got anything I'm hooked on at the moment - I'm still in the throes of a Line of Duty hangover. I do quite like watching Police Interceptors though. If I believed in guilty pleasures, this would be one! 
 
 
I haven't seen a new release for aaaaages. The last one was probably Finding Dory last summer! I like watching older films on DVD or Netflix, so it was probably Look Who's Talking Too.


 
My new book, The Little Bed & Breakfast by the Sea is out soon (28th June) so I'm listening to summery songs to make a book playlist.
 
 
Mostly books, writing and Luna!
 
 
 
You can find me on
 
 
 
 
 
So that's me in a nutshell! What are you up to? Let us know in the comments below 😊
 

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Book News: Introducing The Little Bed & Breakfast by the Sea!

I am so excited to share the cover and blurb of my soon-to-be-released book, The Little Bed & Breakfast by the Sea!

http://amzn.to/2qnxtt5

Escape to the seaside this summer!

Mae loves running her little Bed & Breakfast, it’s the perfect place to raise her adorable four-year-old daughter! And no matter how persistently local vet, Alfie, chases her, she just doesn’t have time for men in her life.

Willow is busy building her dream home with her husband, Ethan, but with every month that passes she secretly worries that her happy ever after will never come true…

Melody only intended to stay in the bustling seaside town for a few days to capture the perfect photo. But when she meets Hugo – the charming man in the ice cream van – she decides to stay a little longer!

One thing is for sure, summer at the little Bed & Breakfast by the sea certainly has a few surprises in store…
 
 
What do you think?
 
I absolutely ADORE the cover and I can't wait to share Mae, Willow and Melody's story with you!
 
 
The Little Bed & Breakfast by the Sea will be published on 28th June, but it's available to pre-order right now!

Monday, 15 May 2017

Newsletter Giveaway - June 2017


My very first newsletter will be going out on 2nd June, and I'll be picking one of my subscribers to win the bundle of goodies pictured above.

The bundle contains:

  • The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts notebook
  • The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts magnet
  • The Wedding Date magnet
  • Sweets and chocolate

If you've already subscribed, your name is already in the hat (also, thank you!) and anybody who signs up from now until the newsletter goes out (or shortly before - I need time to draw the name and put it into the newsletter) will be added.

And that's all you have to do to enter. No retweeting or liking (although I'd be grateful, obv), no party tricks. Just fill in the form below and you have your virtual raffle ticket.

And it gets better, because with each newsletter that goes out, I'll pick a new winner of a new prize bundle (I'll post details of the prizes here on the blog and on Twitter and Facebook). All subscribers will be eligible to win, not just the new subscribers (don't you HATE those kind of deals. Grr!).

You can find information on the kind of content you can expect with each newsletter here


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Monday, 8 May 2017

Peanut Butter Blondies - A Bonus Short Story And Recipe

 
I recently shared my short story series, Five Dates (if you haven't read the series, you can catch up here), but that isn't the end for Natalie. She'll soon be venturing out for a sixth date - the second date with one of her speed dating partners - and you get to choose who she dates!



 
The sixth instalment will be sent out in my first newsletter on 2nd June, so make sure you sign up using the form below to receive it. You will also receive a bonus recipe from The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts (you can see five of the recipes here), as well as the chance to win some prizes and catch up with book news, book recommendations and more!

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Friday, 5 May 2017

Five Recipes: Chocolate Chunk Cookies

If you've read The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, you'll know about Maddie's idea to host speed dating nights with a difference - the difference being the addition of a dessert to accompany each date.

Last week, I posted a series of short stories centring around Natalie and her experience of the speed-dating-with-a-difference night, and this week I'll be sharing the recipes of the desserts she enjoyed.

All the desserts mentioned were part of The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, and today's recipe is my favourite biscuit recipe: Chocolate Chunk Cookies!

 
Chocolate Chunk Cookies
(because chocolate chips are for wimps)
 
 
Preheat your oven to 180C and line a baking tray with baking paper. I find scrunching the paper and then unfurling and laying it on the tray helps it to stay flat. Otherwise it just curls at the corners and sends me into a rage.
 
Break the chocolate into chunks. You can use any chocolate you want to - I opted for Dairy Milk in the pictured cookies because it was on offer at the time 😉 Place the chunks in a food bag and give them a thwack with a rolling pin - but not too much because you'll want some big chunks in there, trust me.
 
Beat the butter (which should be softened and not straight from the fridge!) and sugars until the mixture is light in colour and smooth.

Beat the eggs and add to the butter/sugar mix, stirring through with a  wooden spoon.

Stir in the vanilla extract, flour and bicarbonate of soda. Add the chocolate chunks and mix well to distribute as evenly as possible.

Spoon the mixture onto the baking tray. Use tablespoons for medium-large cookies or teaspoons for smaller (puny) cookies. Make sure you leave space between each mound as they will flatten and spread as they bake. You don't need to be too neat - just plonk them on and they'll come out in decent shape!

Bake for 10-15 minutes. I like mine slightly crisp on the edges but still soft in the middle.

Remove from the oven and leave on the tray for ten minutes to set before transferring to a wire cooling rack.

Enjoy! And believe me, you will. These cookies are AMAZING.


You can find all the recipes here

 
 About The Book

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Teashop-Broken-Hearts-ebook/dp/B01MDNF71Y/

From fairy cakes to first dates!

Maddie Lamington’s dreams are crumbling around her. If she doesn’t come up with a plan to save her little teashop on Sweet Street soon, it might be too late…

So when she sees how the perfect apple crumble brings together her lonely father and faithful customer Birdie, inspiration strikes: she’ll set up a dating night involving all her sweetest bakes.

Luckily, seriously gorgeous Caleb is on hand to help sprinkle a little magic – and a lot of sugar! Could one night of scrumptious first dates fix Maddie’s heartbreak and save her beloved teashop, too?


Thursday, 4 May 2017

Five Recipes: Rasberry Cream Cheese Brownies

If you've read The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, you'll know about Maddie's idea to host speed dating nights with a difference - the difference being the addition of a dessert to accompany each date.

Last week, I posted a series of short stories centring around Natalie and her experience of the speed-dating-with-a-difference night, and this week I'll be sharing the recipes of the desserts she enjoyed.

All the desserts mentioned were part of The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, and today's recipe is Mags' favourite: Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies!



Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies



Break the chocolate into small pieces (trying your hardest not to have a nibble as you do so) and place the pieces in a saucepan along with the butter and a pinch of salt. I use milk chocolate, but you can use dark if you prefer.

Over a gentle heat, melt the chocolate and butter and once smooth, transfer the mixture into a large bowl and leave on the side to cool.

Pre-heat the oven to 160C. Grease and line a 25 x 35cm baking tin using non-stick baking paper.

Whisk the eggs and 450g of the sugar in another large bowl. If, like me, you're a bit rubbish at cracking eggs, you can crack them into a cup, one at a time, making sure there are no sneaky bits of shell in there before tipping it into the mixing bowl and moving on to the next egg and repeating. It takes a bit longer, but I find it much less of a faff retrieving the stray bits of egg shell from a cup with just the one egg in there!

Once the egg and sugar mixture is light and doubled in volume, gently fold it into the chocolate and butter mixture.

Fold in the flour, baking powder and cocoa. Once the ingredients are combined, pour the mixture into your baking tin and set aside.

Whip the cream cheese and remaining 50g of caster sugar together until smooth. Add the raspberries, crushing them as you fold them into the mixture to create the rippled effect.

Transfer the cream cheese mixture on top of your brownie mixture and give it a swirl. Pop the tin in the oven for 30-40 minutes.

You can wash up now, or you can be normal and sit down with a brew. Entirely up to you.

Remove the tin from the oven and allow to cool before you cut the brownies into squares to enjoy with a cup of tea.


You can find all the recipes here


 
 About The Book

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Teashop-Broken-Hearts-ebook/dp/B01MDNF71Y/

From fairy cakes to first dates!

Maddie Lamington’s dreams are crumbling around her. If she doesn’t come up with a plan to save her little teashop on Sweet Street soon, it might be too late…

So when she sees how the perfect apple crumble brings together her lonely father and faithful customer Birdie, inspiration strikes: she’ll set up a dating night involving all her sweetest bakes.

Luckily, seriously gorgeous Caleb is on hand to help sprinkle a little magic – and a lot of sugar! Could one night of scrumptious first dates fix Maddie’s heartbreak and save her beloved teashop, too?


Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Five Recipes: Apple Crumble

If you've read The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, you'll know about Maddie's idea to host speed dating nights with a difference - the difference being the addition of a dessert to accompany each date.

Last week, I posted a series of short stories centring around Natalie and her experience of the speed-dating-with-a-difference night, and this week I'll be sharing the recipes of the desserts she enjoyed.

All the desserts mentioned were part of The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, and today's recipe is Birdie's favourite: Apple Crumble!

 
Apple Crumble
 
 
For the base:
 
Peel and core the apples. I use Granny Smith, but you can use whichever you prefer. Chop into small chunks.
 
Pop the apple chunks into a bowl and add the demerara sugar and give them a little mix.
 
Empty the mixture into a pie dish and press down.
 
 
For the crumble:
 
Pre-heat the oven to 200C
 
Cut the butter into cubes, making sure the butter is cold and not room temperature.
 
Sieve the flour into a bowl and add the butter cubes, caster sugar and dark muscovado sugar. Rub the butter, flour and sugars until it starts to resemble a crumble.
 
Top the apple layer with the crumble and bake for 40-45 minutes.
 
Remove from the oven and serve with custard (I prefer cold custard, but I suppose warm will do too).
 


You can find all the recipes here


 
 About The Book

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Teashop-Broken-Hearts-ebook/dp/B01MDNF71Y/

From fairy cakes to first dates!

Maddie Lamington’s dreams are crumbling around her. If she doesn’t come up with a plan to save her little teashop on Sweet Street soon, it might be too late…

So when she sees how the perfect apple crumble brings together her lonely father and faithful customer Birdie, inspiration strikes: she’ll set up a dating night involving all her sweetest bakes.

Luckily, seriously gorgeous Caleb is on hand to help sprinkle a little magic – and a lot of sugar! Could one night of scrumptious first dates fix Maddie’s heartbreak and save her beloved teashop, too?


Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Five Recipes: American-Style Cheesecake

If you've read The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, you'll know about Maddie's idea to host speed dating nights with a difference - the difference being the addition of a dessert to accompany each date.

Last week, I posted a series of short stories centring around Natalie and her experience of the speed-dating-with-a-difference night, and this week I'll be sharing the recipes of the desserts she enjoyed.

All the desserts mentioned were part of The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, and today's recipe is Little Jordan's favourite: American-Style Cheesecake!

 
American-Style Cheesecake
 
 
To make the base:
 
Place the biscuits into a plastic food bag and thwack it repeatedly with a rolling pin until you have a bag of crumbs.
 
Melt the butter and granulated sugar together in a saucepan using a gentle heat. Add the biscuit crumbs and combine.
 
Transfer the buttery crumb mixture into a 24cm round cake tin and push down with a wooden spoon until all the space is filled and the mixture is flat (ish - no need for a spirit level or anything).
 
Pop in the fridge to chill out for an hour or two so it can set.
 
Make a cup of tea and stick the telly on for a bit (optional)
 
To make the filling:
 
Pre-heat the oven to 150C.
 
Chuck the cream cheese into a bowl and beat with an electric whisk until soft. Add the caster sugar, vanilla extract and salt and beat until light and creamy.
 
Add the eggs and continue to beat.
 
Finely grate the zest of the lemon and stir into the mixture. Transfer the mixture into the tin over the biscuit base.
 
Bake for 1 - 1 1/2 hours.
 
Turn off the oven but don't remove the cheesecake yet. Open the oven door and leave the cheesecake to cool in there for an hour.
 
I'm really sorry, but you still can't scoff it. Pop the cheesecake in the fridge to chill and set overnight.
 
The next day:
 
Enjoy that bad boy!

 


You can find all the recipes here


 
 About The Book

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Teashop-Broken-Hearts-ebook/dp/B01MDNF71Y/

From fairy cakes to first dates!

Maddie Lamington’s dreams are crumbling around her. If she doesn’t come up with a plan to save her little teashop on Sweet Street soon, it might be too late…

So when she sees how the perfect apple crumble brings together her lonely father and faithful customer Birdie, inspiration strikes: she’ll set up a dating night involving all her sweetest bakes.

Luckily, seriously gorgeous Caleb is on hand to help sprinkle a little magic – and a lot of sugar! Could one night of scrumptious first dates fix Maddie’s heartbreak and save her beloved teashop, too?


Monday, 1 May 2017

Five Recipes: Fairy Cakes

If you've read The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, you'll know about Maddie's idea to host speed dating nights with a difference - the difference being the addition of a dessert to accompany each date.

Last week, I posted a series of short stories centring around Natalie and her experience of the speed-dating-with-a-difference night, and this week I'll be sharing the recipes of the desserts she enjoyed.

All the desserts mentioned were part of The Little Teashop of Broken Hearts, and today's recipe is Maddie's favourite: Fairy Cakes!

 
Fairy Cakes
 
 
Pre-heat your oven to 180C and line a 12-hole bun tray with paper cases.
 
Using an electric whisk, cream the butter. Add the caster sugar and beat until the mixture is pale and fluffy.
 
Crack the eggs into a cup or bowl and beat. Add the beaten eggs to the sugar and butter mixture a little bit at a time, making sure you beat well each time.
 
Add one tsp of vanilla extract. Sieve in the flour, folding it into the mixture until you can no longer see any flour.
 
Pop the mixture into the cake cases, filling them about two thirds full.
 
Bake in the oven for around 20 minutes and then cool on a wire rack.
 
Once cool, make up the icing sugar according to the packet. You can add colouring/flavouring if you'd like, but I prefer plain white.
 
Spoon the icing onto the tops of the cakes, smoothing and spreading with the back of the spoon. Add the sprinkles while the icing is still wet and leave to set (if you can wait. It'll do no harm to jump right in).
 


You can find all the recipes here


 
 About The Book

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Teashop-Broken-Hearts-ebook/dp/B01MDNF71Y/

From fairy cakes to first dates!

Maddie Lamington’s dreams are crumbling around her. If she doesn’t come up with a plan to save her little teashop on Sweet Street soon, it might be too late…

So when she sees how the perfect apple crumble brings together her lonely father and faithful customer Birdie, inspiration strikes: she’ll set up a dating night involving all her sweetest bakes.

Luckily, seriously gorgeous Caleb is on hand to help sprinkle a little magic – and a lot of sugar! Could one night of scrumptious first dates fix Maddie’s heartbreak and save her beloved teashop, too?