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Friday, October 23, 2020


October reminds us of cool, crisp days, a rainbow of colored leaves, and Halloween. October is also National Dessert Month. With seasonal ingredients like spicy cinnamon, rich caramel, and decadent pecans, autumn is one of the best seasons for baking. Who doesn’t enjoy pumpkin pie heaped with Cool Whip? Or apple pie or crisp? How about pecan pie and the many cobblers?

This month, on October 26th, I’m releasing my last novella in the Musical Christmas Series. It’s Lucy –The Clarinetist, and like the preceding novellas, it includes a recipe that one of the main characters enjoys. This time it’s Andre Almanza, my main character, who likes apple pie with a cinnamon crumb crust.

APPLE PIE with Cinnamon Crumb Crust  


¾ cup sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. nutmeg (optional)
Dash of salt
6 cups thinly sliced pared apples
(McIntosh work well)
2 Tbsp. butter or margarine

Deep Dish Pastry for a 9-inch pie
(You need only the bottom crust)

 Heat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare pastry or use one purchased from the store.
(Frozen deep dish varieties work best.)

Stir together sugar, flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt, and mix with apples.

Turn into pastry-lined pie pan and dot with butter.


Mix 1 cup flour, ½ cold cup butter, and ½ cup (packed) brown sugar.

Cut dry ingredients into butter with pastry cutter until crumbly.
Carefully spread the mixture on top of the apples, packing it down around the edges, and sprinkle the top with cinnamon.

Bake 40 to 50 minutes.

NOTE: You may need to cover topping with aluminum foil for the last ten minutes to
prevent excess browning. Serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream.


A merry novella for the holiday season!

Lucy Ciaffonni wants nothing more than to start her own public relations firm, but she’s stuck at the local bank performing boring communications and advertising duties. When her best friend and computer guru, Andre Almanza, buys an area farm to create a barn theater, Lucy is pulled into the mystery of discovering where a rare, German, H.F. Kayser clarinet was hidden on the property during Prohibition.

Andre Almanza has always adored Lucy from afar. He hopes she’ll take the position of barn theater manager. When she agrees to help him renovate the barn and update and furnish his huge Victorian house, he is delighted—that is, until the entire town becomes involved in locating the missing antique instrument. To complicate matters, there are ruthless people who want to recover the expensive clarinet and cash in on its legend and value.

Will Lucy and Andre locate the clarinet and finally acknowledge the sparks of romance that have been smoldering between them for the longest time? Will it be the perfect Christmas?


  1. That recipe sounds delicious! I volunteer to be an official taste tester.

  2. Hi, Bea. It's the crust that makes the pie sweet and decadent. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. The recipe sounds yummy. Apple is one of our favorite pies.

  4. Good luck with the new book and thanks for the wonderful recipe.


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