Author Edith Maxwell is a former farmer of a certified organic farm. Her Local Foods Mystery series is jam packed with information on farming, and delicious recipes, like this one:
2 medium local apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
(Cortland, Macoun, or Spartan varieties work well)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus ¼ teaspoon for the almonds
½ cup sliced almonds
1 ½ cups unbleached white flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt (Note: NOT cyanide salt . . .)
½ cup local salted butter, softened
1 1/3 cups light brown sugar
4 large local eggs
½ cup local milk (fat content of your preference)
Whipped cream for garnishing the cake
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan.
In a medium bowl toss the sliced apples with 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon, and set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the sliced almonds and the remaining ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat after each addition. Gradually fold in half the reserved flour mixture, then the milk, and then the remaining reserved flour mixture.
Pour half the batter in the prepared springform pan, layer the reserved apples evenly on top, and then pour the remaining batter over the apples. Sprinkle the cinnamon almonds evenly on top.
Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Serve warm with whipped cream dusted with cinnamon.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
“Quirky characters, lots of organic farming tips, and a well-developed mystery make this Cam’s best outing yet.” – Kirkus Reviews
Snow is piling up in Westbury, Massachusetts, and Cam Flaherty’s organic farm has managed to survive the harsh New England winter. Unfortunately murder seems to be the crop in season…
Cam is finding the New Year just as hectic as the old one. Her sometimes rocky relationship with Chef Jake Ericsson is in a deep freeze, she’s struggling to provide the promised amount of food to the subscribers in her first winter CSA, and her new greenhouse might just collapse from the weight of the snow. Supplying fresh ingredients for a dinner at the local assisted living facility seems like the least of her worries—until one of the elderly residents dies after eating some of her produce.
Cantankerous Bev Montgomery had a lot of enemies, from an unscrupulous real estate developer who coveted her land to an aggrieved care provider fed up with her verbal abuse. But while the motives in this case may be plentiful, the trail of poisoned produce leads straight back to Cam. Not even her budding romance with police detective Pete Pappas will keep him from investigating her.
As the suspects gather, a blizzard buries the scene of the crime under a blanket of snow, leaving Cam stranded in the dark with a killer who gives new meaning to the phrase “dead of winter.”