I have had the honor and pleasure to work with on several projects with the ever so lovely and talented Eileen Griffin. Today I’m pleased to showcase her debut solo release, Dinner for Two from Evernight Publishing’s Romance on the Go Line.
Guest post by Eileen Griffin:
*hugs* A huge thanks to my co-writer for having me on her blog today!
In Dinner For Two, Tony and Sonia save a dinner party by creating an Italian Wedding Soup to serve to Sonia’s boss and his shareholders. The soup derives its name from the thought that it weds the vegetables (in the soup base) with meat (in the polpette), and with this added protein it becomes a complete and balanced one-course meal. It is typically served at weddings and occasion where there is reason to celebrate good news.
Italian Wedding Soup Recipe
Makes 8 Servings
For the meatballs:
3/4 pound ground turkey
1/2 pound turkey sausage
2/3 cup fresh white bread crumbs or Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus extra for serving
3 tablespoons milk
1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the soup:
2 tablespoons good olive oil
1 cup minced yellow onion
1 cup diced carrots (3 carrots), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
3/4 cup diced celery (2 stalks), cut into 1/4 inch pieces
10 cups homemade chicken stock or store-bought chicken stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup small pasta such as tubetini or stars
12 ounces baby spinach, washed and trimmed
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
For the meatballs, place the ground chicken, sausage, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, Pecorino, Parmesan, milk, egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a bowl and combine gently with a fork. With a teaspoon, drop 1 to 1 1/4-inch meatballs onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. (You should have about 40 meatballs. They don’t have to be perfectly round.) Bake for 30 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned. Set aside.
In the meantime, for the soup, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the meatballs to the soup and simmer for 1 minute. Taste for salt and pepper. Stir in the fresh spinach and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach is just wilted. Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle each serving with extra grated Parmesan.
Dinner For Two
by: Eileen Griffin
Genre: Erotic Romance
Length: Romance On The Go – Short Story
Published: December 17, 2013
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Sonia Davenport has dreams of coordinating and planning special events. When she’s given the opportunity to plan a dinner for her boss and his shareholders, she jumps at the chance to make everything perfect. Helping her plan the special night is the head chef of the restaurant, Tony Mancinni, who is not only charming but goes out of his way to make Sonia feel special during the entire planning process.
The dinner party almost turns disastrous when an employee mixes up the orders and sets out the wrong food. In a mad rush to save the dinner, Sonia and Tony realize their attraction to each other when things heat up in the kitchen. However, Tony has to convince Sonia that he wants more than just an extra set of hands in his restaurant – he wants her to stay the night so he can convince her to stay for good.
Tony gently rubbed his finger along her bottom lip. “I had hoped everything would be perfect tonight because I wanted to impress you. When you came in for brunch that first Sunday and laid out your plans, not only were you beautiful, but you had a detailed description of what you wanted. On the catering side of things, you have no idea how attractive that is. Then, when you came in for your tasting, I didn’t think I was going to make it through the afternoon without asking you out. But I have a strict rule: Don’t date the clients until after the function is over. So I waited. Do you have any idea how hard it was to wait?”
Sonia shook her head slightly, then let her lips part. Instead of replying to him, she slid her tongue out to meet his finger, gently caressing the tip. He hissed in a breath, his eyes fixated on her tongue and lips. Feeling emboldened by his words, she leaned closer and drew his finger deeper inside her mouth, wrapping her lips around it as she laved it with her tongue.
“Sonia,” he whispered. “You’re so beautiful. But I didn’t ask you up here for this.”
She leaned back, his finger sliding out of her mouth. All the nerves and doubts she’d felt earlier were replaced by a heat that was coursing through her. She’d felt it all night in the kitchen with him and it was stronger now that she knew he wanted her as badly as she wanted him.
“I’m glad you asked me up here, Tony. But if we’re being honest with each other, I think dinner can wait. You see, I’ve lost my appetite. For food, that is.”
BUY DINNER FOR TWO HERE:
ABOUT EILEEN GRIFFIN:
Eileen Griffin lives in the Southwest but loves to travel and has spent many summers crossing Europe with nothing but a backpack on her back. She enjoys TexMex, lives for good wine, and has a certain penchant for purple unicorns. She loves reading all genres of books, but her current obsession is writing M/M with lots of boykissing.