featuring guest authors; crafting tips and projects; recipes from food editor and sleuthing sidekick Cloris McWerther; and decorating, travel, fashion, health, beauty, and finance tips from the rest of the American Woman editors.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

FASHION WITH TESSA--HALLOWEEN COSTUMES


Will Doc McStuffin or Wolverine be ringing your doorbell today? Most likely you’ll see many of both, depending on the age and sex of the trick or treaters in your neighborhood. According to one survey, the top five kids’ Halloween costumes for 2013 will be the characters from Despicable Me 2, Monster’s University, various superheroes, Sofia the First, and Doc McStuffin.

You might also find a few creative DIY costumes among adults. According to one recent newspaper article some top trending ideas for costumes are Flo, the Progressive Insurance spokesperson; Grumpy Cat; the guys from Duck Dynasty; and homages to Sharknado.

Of course, we’ll still see lots of princesses, Disney or otherwise, along with witches. Zombies will still be seen prowling the streets, as well as the occasional vampire, and you’ll probably notice a Walter White here and there. Hopefully, you won’t open your door to find a Honey Boo Boo or twerking Miley Cyrus, but you never know.

Happy Halloween from all of us at Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers. Don’t steal too much of your kids’ candy!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

DECORATING WITH JEANIE--GUEST AUTHOR AND DECORATOR HELENA FAIRFAX


Helena Fairfax was born in Uganda to an Irish mother and British father. She’s lived in Germany and Austria and now resides in Wuthering Heights territory. She joins us today to share her love of decorating with antiques and tell us about her latest novel. Learn more about Helena at her website. 

Decorating with Antiques

Buying and selling antiques has become a popular pastime, and using antiques in your home is a great way to provide individual style.  Antiques are also more affordable than you might think.  Most antique shops don’t just stock the more valuable items such as Royal Worcester vases or seventeenth century oak furniture.  You will find an array of items covering a range of prices…and there’s nothing more fascinating than picking your way through the display!

Incorporating antiques into a modern home might seem like a contradiction in terms, but one or two vintage items of furniture can make a striking addition. If you are not keen on bringing in larger items, then a few vases, a bowl or an antique print can add interest.


It’s easy to get carried away in antique shops (or maybe that’s just me!), so to prevent your house looking like a mish-mash of styles, try to concentrate on your color scheme, or perhaps on one particular period whose style you love.

My terraced house in the north of England, for example, was built during the Victorian era, but I personally find the typical Victorian style a little too ornate and fussy.   The Victorians were great ones for frills and bows and tartan dresses, parlors cluttered with ornaments, and showy jewelry. 

The art nouveau period, at the turn of the twentieth century, swept away all these frills and furbelows, and it's a style I love.

Art nouveau is French for "new art."  It's hard to sum up in words what this new art meant, but I'll try!  To me, art nouveau is all about dramatic, curving lines with themes and colours taken from nature.  Sadly, the original stained glass windows in my house are long gone :( , but I have a replica which encapsulates the art nouveau style.

A stained glass window is one of the more pricey ways of incorporating your chosen style in your décor, but having the style you want needn’t cost a great deal.  For example, I picked up a cheap, battered wardrobe in an antique shop and covered it in a modern wallpaper.  It’s also possible to buy replica antiques, such as the replica lampshade which hangs in my hallway.

Buying antiques for your home is a great way to show your individual style.  And who knows…one day the piece you bought for a song might be worth a fortune :)

The heroine of my latest novel is a woman who knows all about the world of antiques, but maybe a little less about affairs of the heart…until she meets my gorgeous hero!

The Antique Love
One rainy day in London, Wyoming man Kurt Bold walks into an antique shop off the King’s Road and straight into the dreams of its owner, Penny Rosas. Lively, spirited and imaginative, Penny takes this handsome stranger for a romantic cowboy straight from the pages of a book. Kurt certainly looks every inch the hero…but he soon brings Penny’s dreams to earth with a thump. His job is in the City, in the logical world of finance—and as far as Kurt is concerned, romance is just for dreamers. Events in his childhood have shown him just how destructive love can be. Now he’s looking for a wife, right enough, but what he wants is a marriage based on logic and rational decisions. Kurt treats Penny like he would his kid sister, but when he hires her to help refurbish his beautiful Victorian house near Richmond Park, it’s not long before he starts to realize it’s not just his home she’s breathing life into. The logical heart he has guarded so carefully all these years is opening up to new emotions, in a most disturbing way…

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

COOKING WITH CLORIS--GUEST COOK AND AUTHOR ROSIE GENOVA


It’s always a pleasure to welcome a fellow Jersey girl to Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers. With us today is Rosie Genova author of the Italian Kitchen Mysteries. An English teacher by day and novelist by night, Rosie also writes women’s fiction as Rosemary DiBattista. Learn more about her and her books at her website.

There’s a moment in my book, Murder and Marinara, when things look particularly dark for the staff of the Casa Lido, the restaurant at the center of the series. The chef responds by making a frittata, an egg-based dish that is one part quiche, one part omelet. And while the characters’ problems aren’t solved for another hundred pages, at least they get a warm, comforting meal.

In real life, I’m a big fan of Italian food that might be categorized as cucina rustica, or as we say in English, comfort food. Particularly at this time of year, I turn to favorites like roasted sausage with peppers and polenta; pasta with pancetta; greens with garlic and white beans, and one I  recently served up: a lovely frittata rounded out with a green salad and homemade bread.

The frittata pictured came about at the end of a long day. I was tired, nothing was defrosted, and I didn’t want pizza. In the refrigerator were some leftover roasted potatoes with caramelized onions and a package of fresh mozzarella. I always have eggs on hand; ditto Progresso flavored bread crumbs, a staple no Italian kitchen is ever without. I sliced the potatoes thin, estimated how much cheese to slice (then added six more slices) and scrambled up some eggs with freshly ground pepper, salt, grated Parm, and the flavored crumbs, making sure to get every last piece of sweet browned onions in there. I started it on the stove in the cast iron pan and finished it off in the oven. While it set up, I threw together a salad and warmed up half a loaf of bread. With a glass of strong red wine, that meal was nirvana. And I put it together in just about the time it would have taken me to get to the pizza place and back. 

The recipe below is a more formalized version of my thrown-together version, but this is a dish with many variations:

Ingredients:
1-2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 quarter of a large Vidalia onion, thinly sliced
5 ounces of baby arugula (or baby spinach, escarole, or other tender green)
8 large eggs
¼ pound of fontina cheese cut into cubes (or fresh or regular mozzarella)
½ teaspoon of salt, or more to taste
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, or several twists of a grinder
Italian flavored bread crumbs and grated cheese for topping

1.             Pre-heat oven to 350°.
2.             Heat oil in a well-seasoned 10-inch cast iron pan or other heavy ovenproof skillet. Cook the onion over medium heat, separating it into ribbons until nicely browned. Add arugula and cook, stirring frequently until wilted, about 2 minutes.
3.             Whisk together the eggs, cheese, salt and pepper until frothy. Pour over arugula and onions in the skillet and cook over medium heat without stirring until almost set, about 5-6 minutes.
4.             Remove from heat and sprinkle bread crumbs and cheese over the top. Bake for about 15 minutes until edges are golden brown and center is set.

(You don’t have to be limited to this recipe, however. You can do as I did, and use leftovers, any other veggies of your choice, or meats such as crumbled cooked Italian sausage, sautéed pancetta, or ham.)

Murder and Marinara
Hit whodunit writer Victoria Rienzi is getting back to her roots by working at her family’s Italian restaurant. But now in between plating pasta and pouring vino, she’ll have to find the secret ingredient in a murder.... 

When Victoria takes a break from penning her popular mystery series and moves back to the Jersey shore, she imagines sun, sand, and scents of fresh basil and simmering marinara sauce at the family restaurant, the Casa Lido. But her nonna’s recipes aren’t the only things getting stirred up in this Italian kitchen.

Their small town is up in arms over plans to film a new reality TV show, and when Victoria serves the show’s pushy producer his last meal, the Casa Lido staff finds itself embroiled in a murder investigation. Victoria wants to find the real killer, but there are as many suspects as tomatoes in her nonna’s garden. Now she’ll have to heat up her sleuthing skills quickly…before someone else gets a plateful of murder. 

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Monday, October 28, 2013

CRAFTS WITH ANASTASIA--PAPER BEADS


A few months ago I featured projects for making a bowl and a trivet from magazine pages. Today, another project that will help you repurpose those magazines rather than tossing in the recycling bin.

Jewelry-making with beads is a very popular craft right now, but those beads at the craft store can cost a pretty penny. Here’s how to make your own beads from paper.

Paper Beads

Materials:
glossy magazine pages, 1” x 4” and 1/2” x 8” pieces of light-weight cardboard or index stock, ruler, pencil, scissors, wooden skewer or 1/16” diameter dowel, tacky glue, glossy acrylic varnish or clear nailpolish, small paintbrush, block of floral foam or Styrofoam®

1. Mark the center of one short end of each piece of cardboard. Draw a line from each corner of the opposite short end to the center point to form a triangle. Cut out the two triangles. These will be used as templates to make two different sized beads.

2. Using the templates, trace triangles onto magazine pages. Cut out the paper triangles.

3. For each bead, apply a dab of tacky glue to the wrong side of the triangle point. Beginning at the wide end, roll the paper tightly around the dowel, make sure to keep the triangle centered as you roll.


4. Glue the tip to the rolled paper. Allow to dry.

5. Apply acrylic varnish or clear nail polish to the beads. Insert dowel into block of floral foam or Styrofoam® until varnish is completely dry.


6. Remove paper beads from dowel and use as you would any beads in jewelry-making projects.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

THE FUSSY LIBRARIAN

Love to read? Of course you do! And you'll love the Fussy Librarian. We do! Sign up for their newsletter, and you'll receive a daily email suggesting books based on your interests and content preferences.

Friday, October 25, 2013

BOOK CLUB FRIDAY--GUEST AUTHOR SUZY TURNER


Suzy Turner is a Brit living in Portugal. She’s worked as a journalist, assistant editor, features editor, and magazine editor. Nearly four years ago she turned her attention to fiction and has since written six young adult novels and recently published her first chick lit novel, Forever Fredless. Today she joins us with a sneak peek at that book. Learn more about Suzy at her website, her chick lit blog, and her YA blog. – AP

Forever Fredless
Kate Robinson has spent the past two decades yearning to find her soul mate, the boy she found and then lost during a family holiday. Shortly after her twenty-eighth birthday, however, she inherits a fortune from an old family friend and becomes something of an overnight celebrity. Can her new-found fame lead her to him after all this time?

EXCERPT
Thank God for anti-perspirant, I thought as I sat on the couch and waited for the countdown to begin. I clutched at my hands until they were white and looked across at the two people sitting opposite, both completely at ease in front of the cameras.

Five, four, three, two, one...

'Welcome back to this morning's edition of Good Morning GB,' announced Ireland Rothschild, the blonde-haired, blue eyed darling of morning TV. 'I'm here with Fergus O'Reilly and we've a special guest with us this morning. None other than Britain's love-struck multi-millionaire, Kate Robinson. 'Welcome, Kate,' she said with a dazzling smile aimed more towards the camera than at me.

As my cheeks began to heat up, I was so grateful to the make-up artist, who had insisted on caking on the foundation before the show had started. In fact, I had so much make-up on that I was hoping once I'd removed it, nobody would recognise me when I headed to the airport in my now rather stupidly chosen car. I couldn't exactly blend in driving a pink Mini could I?

'Good morning,' I whispered shyly.

Fergus grinned back at me, tilting his head as if he was about to speak to a child. 'Now, tell us, Kate dear, how does it feel to never have to worry about money ever again?' he asked, his toothpaste advert teeth twinkling beneath the heat of the studio lights.

'Erm, well, I guess it's... erm, kind of... erm,' I felt so bloody stupid. Great time for my brain to stop working. 'I - erm. Great,' I nodded. 'Great, really great.' Idiot.

Ireland glanced across at her grey-haired colleague and pouted before nodding. 'Tell us how you knew this man. This,' she glanced down at the iPad on her lap and continued, 'Samuel?'

I cleared my throat and lifted my head, feeling like my brain was back in action. 'He was a very good friend of the family, some years ago,' I answered.

'Just a friend? Why did he leave you all his money and his property?' asked Fergus.

'He didn't have any family and I guess you could say that my mother and I were the closest he ever had to a family.'

'Isn't that lovely?' pouted Ireland. 'You certainly are a lucky woman. But what about your mother? Didn't she receive any of his inheritance?'

'No,' I said before swallowing hard. 'My mother lives a rather... nomadic lifestyle, in Africa. She doesn't want any of it. All she asked of me was to donate a sum to charity which, of course, I have done.'

'She lives in Africa? A nomadic lifestyle? That sounds intriguing. Perhaps we should interview her one of these days,' laughed Ireland and Fergus together.

'Have you splashed out on anything since receiving your inheritance back in June?' they asked, leaning forward eagerly awaiting my answer.

'Yes I have actually. I bought a car and a new house.'

'Well good for you, Kate. But now, most of us are curious about this boy you lost. Tell us about him?'

Oh no. Why did I agree to this?

Taking a deep breath, I knew I had no choice. Several articles had been printed since the one in Liberty; everyone wanted to know more and nobody was going to leave me alone until I told them everything.

'He was just a boy who I had a connection with when I was much, much younger. It was at Skegness. At an afternoon disco for kids. I was dancing and I felt someone touch my back and when I turned around there he was.  The most beautiful boy I'd ever seen,' I said, stopping and smiling as I reminisced. ‘It was one of the happiest memories of my life.'
Sighing, I continued, 'We just looked at each other and it was like everything else just disappeared into the background. We stood staring, for what seemed like ages. I could barely move. And then, almost as soon as it had begun, my dad appeared and took me away. I couldn't do anything as we walked to the car. I looked around for the boy but he was gone. And then, just as we were driving away, I turned around in my seat and there he was. He had a daffodil in his hand. I always assumed he'd gone to pick it for me, but that's just a childish fantasy, I guess. The whole thing is probably nothing but a childish fantasy, really.'

Ireland was very carefully dabbing at her eyes with a tissue, pretending to be moved, while Fergus smiled sadly.

'What a beautiful story, Kate. I don't believe for one second that this is a childish fantasy. It's romantic and beautiful,' Ireland said.

'Now, tell us, Kate. Why did you call him Fred?' asked Fergus.

Smiling, I explained about the Right Said Fred song, just as the music began in the background.

'What a wonderful tale. Thank you, Kate, for joining us today. It's been a pleasure having you with us to share your story,' said Fergus.

'Thank you,' I whispered before the camera moved back to Ireland as she straightened her skirt and looked alluring.

'Do you remember this moment in time?' she asked. 'Are you the elusive Fred? We'd love to hear from you. You can contact us at...'

Before I could hear anything else, I was ushered off the couch and back behind the scenes where Jo stood, waiting patiently for me, with open arms.


Thursday, October 24, 2013

TRAVEL WITH SERENA--THE ANCIENT CITY OF POMPEII

Pompeii with Vesuvius in background

In 79 AD Mount Vesuvius erupted, instantly killing the citizens of Pompeii and burying the city in upwards of twenty feet of ash and pumice. The city was soon forgotten until it was rediscovered by accident in 1599 during the digging of an underground channel but was soon forgotten again. In 1748 it was rediscovered, and excavation began in earnest. However, many of the discoveries were reburied due to archeological censorship because the Romans of 79 AD were far more sexually liberated than eighteenth century Europeans.

Statuary and household items found during excavation
Due to the lack of air and moisture, the city and most of its artifacts were almost completely intact when discovered. Pompeii is one of few sites where an ancient city has been so well preserved. Life was literally frozen in time on that fateful day. Plaster was used to fill the areas between the ash layers to make casts of the exact positions of the citizens at the moment of their death.

A street in Pompeii
As you walk the streets of Pompeii, you see incredible details—bars and bakeries, bathhouses, streets with tracks for carriages to provide smooth rides. There’s even a house with a mosaic plaque warning visitors to “Cave Canem” or “Beware of the Dog.” 

Altar inside a private home
Frescoed walls in private home
Frescoes still adorn interior walls of homes and bathhouses. Street signs discretely direct men to the Lupanar, the ancient brothel adorned with pornographic frescoes.

Bathhouse
Pompeii has been a tourist destination for over 250 years and is still not fully excavated. It’s a must-see for anyone traveling to Italy.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

DECORATING WITH JEANIE--GUEST DECORATOR MADISON NIGHT


Diane Vallere lives in a world where popcorn is a breakfast food and Doris Day movies are revered for their cultural significance. After over twenty years in the fashion industry, she now writes full time from her home in Los Angeles, California. She launched her own detective agency at ten years old and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Learn more about her and her books at her website and blog.

My name is Madison Night. I own my own mid-century modern interior decorating business in Lakewood, Texas. I didn’t arrive at my decorating education through college, but instead from a lifelong love of watching Doris Day movies. The sets of movies like Pillow Talk, That Touch of Mink, Lover Come Back, and The Thrill of it All provide ample inspiration and act as a kind of documentary for me when it comes to designing a room from that era.

But first: Here’s how I approach a new room design, which I think is a concept that would be successful across various decorating styles. I ask the owners to show me their absolute favorite item in the room. Sometimes it’s a lamp they bought at a yard sale. Sometimes it’s a painting. Sometimes it’s a cookie jar they inherited from a favorite family member. Most of the time it’s an oddball piece that seems not to fit. My job is to design a room around that piece, to look at what is already there and determine what fits and what doesn’t. (Side note: once, when a homicide detective mocked my job, I pointed out that what I do when designing a room is very similar to what he does when assessing clues--look at what is there, figure out what fits and what doesn’t. But that’s a story for another day.)

Using pictures from a room I designed for a client who write mysteries, I’ll show how her dining room came together.

We started with a lamp that she bought for $10 at a flea market.


Next, I suggested yellow walls, a classic color from the midcentury era, and a nice complement to the turquoise and white of the lamp.

I installed floating shelves from IKEA next to the lamp and added more mid-century knickknacks from the client’s collection, along with a whimsical painting by Los Angeles artist Josh Hickman.

 Since this is a dining room, we knew the table and chairs would constitute the major focus of the room. One wall was dissected with windows, so my focus became the remaining wall. I anchored the wall with a silly framed work of yarn art found at a flea market, and mirrored the floating shelf/knickknack display on the opposite side to create balance. The client invested in a Saarinen-style tulip table and chairs (in yellow to coordinate with the walls) and the room was complete.

 Mid-century design relies on concepts of minimalism and right angles, but also embraces color and whimsy. And even though this style is my specialty, I think there are a few takeaways here for you, regardless of your style:

1.             Identify your favorite item in a room and rebuild the room around that item.
2.             Don’t be afraid of paint.
3.             Decorating doesn’t have to be expensive to be effective, but it should show personality.
4.             Don’t ignore DIY and chain stores when it comes to things like storage or shelving. Home Depot, Lowes, Target, IKEA, and The Container Store are a few of my favorites.
5.             Flea markets are your friend.
6.             Fresh flowers are just good sense!

If you love mid-century design and Doris Day like I do, you’ll enjoy these resources: Atomic Ranch Magazine [http://www.atomic-ranch.com/], retro renovation [http://retrorenovation.com/], Discovering Doris [http://www.dorisdaytribute.com/blog/].

Next time you redecorate, remember to have fun!

That Touch of Ink
When mid-century modern interior decorator Madison Night receives a five thousand dollar bill in the mail, she knows it’s a message from her past. Doris Day movies help with inspiration for her business, but her favorite actress can’t help when Madison’s lover comes back. After finding a corpse at a local numismatist, she follows a circuit of rare dollars and common sense to expose a kidnapping plot, a counterfeit operation, and the true price of her independence.

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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

COOKING WITH CLORIS--GUEST AUTHOR & DOUGHNUT MAKER KAYE SPENCER


Our guest cook today is romance author Kaye Spencer, who is also published as A.L. Debran. Kaye is drawn to cowboys and the Old West. Learn more about her and her books at her website

Spectral Legends, Western Romance, and Doughnuts

Halloween — my favorite day of the year. To help us get into the spirit (pun intended) of the holiday, here's a trivia question. What do these legends have in common?

·      Wild Huntsman
·      Herne the Hunter and his pack of white hounds with blood-red ears
·      Gabriel Hounds or Hellhounds
·      Odin astride his eight-legged stallion and followed by the Souls of the Dead
·      Orkney Islands' trows galloping about on midnight rides and driving a stolen cow ahead of them

Regardless of the country of origin, they are all a form of the Wild Hunt or Raging Host. Each legend has a phantasmagorical leader accompanied by a horde of hounds or horses as they race across the night sky amid howls, pounding hooves, and raging winds that stir tumultuous, roiling storm clouds in their wake. To see the Wild Hunt in any of its forms is a bad omen that heralds strife and/or death. They are spectral, supernatural forces traveling the land and sky at night, bringing evil with them, or they are sometimes hunting evil-doers to make them atone for their nasty ways.

So what does any of this have to do with western romance?

Well, America has its own Wild Hunt legend about spirits of damned cowboys doomed to chase a herd of phantom cattle for all eternity as punishment for their evil ways during their lives. Stan Jones wrote a song about it in 1948.

I took that basic idea and turned it into a western romance called Gunslingers & Ghostriders, (written under my A.L. Debran pen name.) The hero, Matt Caddock, has to face the violence he wrought in his past when the Ghostriders come to claim his soul.

Okay, so how do doughnuts fit in?

In Gunslingers & Ghostriders, the heroine, Brenna Stirling, has gained a widespread reputation with the doughnuts she makes each week to give to travelers passing by her ranch house. Here's the scene.

            …On Wednesdays, Brenna made doughnuts and she’d gained wide popularity for having them hot and ready all day long. Because of those doughnuts, word had already spread throughout the area that Matt Caddock, the Cimarron Gunfighter, was breaking horses at the Stirling Compound.
            Matt saw the riders coming at the same time the dogs began barking. He grabbed his plaid shirt from the fence and put it on as he walked into the yard from the corral. He also slipped the thongs off the hammers of his Colts, freeing them for quick use. He watched Brenna meet the riders in the yard. She cradled her shotgun easily in the crook of her elbow, giving the unmistakable impression that she knew how to use the business end, while still presenting watchful hospitality.
            The cowboys tipped their hats and kept their hands on the pommels of their saddles, in plain sight. Matt saw them glance cautiously in his direction as they surveyed the yard. He came up to them as she spoke, staying off to the side.
            “What can I do for you gentlemen? If you’re hungry, you’re welcome to a meal and all the water you need. Get down and cool yourselves in the shade. We never turn a hungry man away.” While her words were genuinely welcoming, the shotgun spoke volumes of its own.
            The cowboys swung down and walked toward her, leading their horses. “Thank you, ma’am, that would be mighty good. I expect you’re Mrs. Gérard.”
            “Yes, I am.”
            The cowboy doing all the talking put his hand inside his vest and came out with paper in his hand, extending it to her. “We just come through Trinidad headed to Laramie and the postmaster asked if we’d bring these letters to you.”
            She stepped quickly to the cowboy. “Thank you. That was very thoughtful. I know it was out of your way.”
            “Our pleasure, ma’am. It wasn’t much more than thirty miles. To be honest, we could have been here yesterday, but we’d heard tell that you make a plate of doughnuts on Wednesdays and we sort of waited.” A goodnatured, embarrassed grin covered the cowboys’ faces and she laughed.
            Matt nodded in greeting to the cowboys. “Akins. Myerson.”
            The cowboys turned to him. “Caddock? Is that you?..."

And here's the doughnut recipe, which is a hand-me-down recipe from my husband's family. Enjoy!

Doughnuts c. 1860
A recipe from Gunslingers & Ghostriders by Kaye Spencer writing as A.L. Debran

Ingredients:
2 eggs                                   
1 tsp vanilla or lemon           
1 tsp salt                       
1 cup sugar            
2 tsp baking powder***                       
2 tblsp oil**
1 cup milk
4 cups flour
1 qt oil** for frying

Directions:
In a small bowl, beat the eggs until silky smooth. Add vanilla, salt, sugar, baking powder, and oil. Stir well. Add milk. Stir well.

In a large bowl, add flour, then stir in the small bowl mixture. It will be thick and sticky and follow the spoon around the bowl. Turn out on floured surface and knead just a little flour in until not so sticky. Roll out no more than 1/2” thick. Cut doughnuts. Fry until lightly browned, turning once to brown both sides evenly. Drain on absorbent cloth. Roll in sugar and cinnamon or dip tops into a thin icing glaze.

Helpful Hints:
--Prep time, 1 hour, start to finish
--Cut all the doughnuts & prepare the absorbent cloth prior to frying
--Heat oil in a pan that is deep and wide enough so the doughnuts and the holes can expand and float as they fry
--Best served (and eaten) warm
--Wrap leftover doughnuts in a tea towel
--Makes 2 to 2-1/2 dozen doughnuts & holes
--Can be fried as dropped doughnuts – just drop heaping tablespoons of batter into oil

Confectioner's Sugar Icing
In sauce pan melt 1 cube butter/margarine, then remove from heat. Add a splash of vanilla, 1/4 cup milk (more or less), and stir. Add confectioner's sugar a cup at a time until consistency is smooth and thick but spreadable. Add more milk and sugar as needed to maintain desired consistency. Reheat if icing hardens before you finish.
   
***Original recipe calls for saleratus, which served as baking powder, & lemon juice or vinegar instead of vanilla in order to activate the saleratus.
**Original recipe calls for melted fat/lard.

Gunslingers & Ghostriders