Today is tax day in the U.S., and I’m betting many of you are not in a very good mood, even those of you who are tax accountants. (I know a few tax accountants, and they’re all looking forward to a well-deserved vacation tomorrow.) If ever there was a reason for comfort food, today has to rank up there in the Top Ten.
In the award-winning romance, Hooking Mr. Right, heroine Thea Chandler knows more than a little about comfort food. She’s relied on it most of her life to help her cope with her difficult family dynamic and a wedding that ended before the “I do’s”.
So after you return from standing in line at the post office, head to the kitchen and whip up a batch of Thea’s Double Chocolate Cherry Cream Cheese Brownies. You have our permission to eat the entire pan. And if you’re really bummed today, do what Thea did and add a carton of Chunky Monkey to it. (Just don’t step on the scale for a few days!)
Thea’s Double Chocolate Cherry Cream Cheese Brownies
(Serves 8 to 10 -- or one, depending on mood)
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup plus 1 Tablespoon flour
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 ounces cherry preserves
Melt chocolate and margarine in microwave at HIGH for two minutes, stirring frequently until chocolate is completely melted. Set aside to cool. Stir 3/4 cup of sugar into melted chocolate. Blend in two eggs and vanilla. Add 1/2 cup of flour, stirring well until well blended. Spread into greased 9-inch square pan.
Using a blender, mix cream cheese, remaining sugar, egg, and flour until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips. Spoon over brownie mixture. Spoon cherry preserves over cream cheese mixture. Run a knife through batter to swirl mixtures. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan. Cut into squares or bars.
Hooking Mr. Right
Can a butt-ugly alley cat named Cupid bring together two people driven apart by secrets and lies?
After writing a doctoral thesis that exposed fraud in the pop-psychology genre, thirty-two year old professor Althea Chandler sacrifices her professional integrity to save her family from financial disaster. She secretly becomes best-selling romance guru Dr. Trulee Lovejoy, self-proclaimed expert on how to catch a man, even though Thea's a miserable failure when it comes to relationships -- especially those with the opposite sex.
Burned by a failed marriage, Luke Bennett finds himself pursued by Dr. Lovejoy toting women after a gossip columnist dubs him New York's most eligible bachelor. When he at first mistakes Thea for one of the women out to snare him, sparks fly, but the two soon find themselves battling sparks of a less hostile nature, thanks in part to that alley cat.
Luke believes he's finally found an honest woman. Unfortunately, Thea is anything but honest. She's got more secrets than the CIA and a desperate gossip columnist out to expose her. Cupid definitely has his work cut out for him.