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Sunday, December 29, 2013

Keeping an Amateur Sleuth Fed

Every amateur sleuth needs a trusty sidekick to help in the sleuthing, and Anastasia Pollack of my eponymous Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, is no exception. Her sidekick is Cloris McWerther, food editor at American Woman, the magazine where Anastasia works as crafts editor. Along with acting as a sounding board for Anastasia to bounce off investigative ideas, Cloris provides another valuable service—she keeps my meal-skipping, sweets-addicted sleuth supplied with baked goods. As her slightly overweight, pear-shaped figure will attest, Anastasia has never met a cupcake, muffin, or donut she didn’t devour.

 Today I’d like to share with you Cloris’s Apple Bundt Cake recipe.

Apple Bundt Cake


5 cooking apples

2 teaspoons cinnamon

2-1/4 cups sugar

1 cup butter

3 cups flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup orange juice

4 eggs

1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon almond extract

Confectioner’s sugar

Peel and slice apples. Place in bowl. Add cinnamon and 1/4 cup sugar. Mix to coat apples. Set aside. Cream the butter and remaining 2 cups of sugar. Mix all other dry ingredients together. Slowly add dry ingredients to butter/sugar mixture. Combine eggs, juice, vanilla, and almond extract. Slowly add to other ingredients as you continue to mix. Batter will be thick.

Grease and flour Bundt pan. Place small amount of batter in bottom of pan. Add a layer of apples. Continue layering batter and apples, with batter as last layer.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/2 hours. Cool on wire rack 15-20 minutes. Remove cake from Bundt pan. Dust with confectioner’s sugar.

About the Author

Award-winning author Lois Winston writes the critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series featuring magazine crafts editor and reluctant amateur sleuth Anastasia Pollack. Assault With a Deadly Glue Gun, the first book in the series, received starred reviews from both Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Kirkus Reviews dubbed it, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” Other books in the series includes Death By Killer Mop Doll, Revenge of the Crafty Corpse, Decoupage Can Be Deadly and the ebook only mini-mysteries Crewel Intentions and Mosaic Mayhem.

Lois is also published in women’s fiction, romance, romantic suspense, and non-fiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. In addition, she’s an award-winning craft and needlework designer. She
often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

 Visit Lois at, visit Emma at, and visit Anastasia at the Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers blog, Follow everyone on Twitter:

Decoupage Can Be Deadly

In her fourth full-length adventure, Anastasia and her fellow American Woman editors are steaming mad when minutes before the opening of a consumer show, they discover half their booth usurped by Bling! their publisher’s newest magazine. CEO Alfred Gruenwald is sporting new arm candy—rapper-turned-entrepreneur and Bling! executive editor, the first-name-only Philomena. During the consumer show, Gruenwald’s wife serves Philomena with an alienation of affection lawsuit, but Philomena doesn’t live long enough to make an appearance in court. She’s found dead days later, stuffed in the shipping case that held Anastasia’s decoupage crafts. When Gruenwald makes cash-strapped Anastasia an offer she can’t refuse, she wonders, does he really want to find Philomena’s killer or is he harboring a hidden agenda?

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  1. Sounds delicious and I already own Decoupage Can be Deadly but popped in to get the recipe. Waving hi to both Judy and Lois. Happy New Year!

  2. Thanks for the recipe! Best wishes for 2014!!

  3. Thanks, Angela! Happy New Year to you, too! And thanks, Andrea and Donnell! I'm not sure my response to your comments went through.

  4. I'm off to buy a bundt; great recipe. Thanks for sharing it.

  5. Sounds like a great recipie. My amateur sleuth's favorite dessert is soft, gooey brownies but I'm sure he'd enjoy a slice of this cake too.

  6. Enjoy the cake, Kathleen!

    Sally, soft, gooey brownies are definitely something Anastasia would love.