Monday, November 18, 2013

A Great New Holiday Book!

A New Holiday Book Is Out!

Carol of the Tales and Other Nightly Noels: An Advent Anthology, Volume 2

Christmas carols capture the spirit of Christmas, and Carol of the Tales and Other Nightly Noels brings beloved carols to life like never before. Throw your cares away with the tales from sweet silver bells. Find out how Santa Claus dabbles in time travel, and feel the redemption of a dying wife's parting Christmas gift. Experience all this and more in these heartfelt, entertaining tales donated by a team of authors from across the country, working together for a good cause. The proceeds from this book will be donated toward Autism research and advocacy.

Anthology authors include: Shirley Bahlmann, C. David Belt, Rebecca Carlson, Loretta Carter, Madonna D. Christensen, Danyelle Ferguson, C. Michelle Jefferies, Theric Jepson, Ryan Larsen, Angie Lofthouse, Betsy Love, J. Lloyd Morgan, Janet Olsen, Teresa G. Osgood, Brian Ricks, Jennifer Ricks, Peg Russell, and Michael Young.

Carol of the Tales is the 2nd book in the Advent Anthology series. Both anthologies are available in paperback and Amazon Kindle formats from 

A Sample of one of the Stories:

The Gifts of Friendship and Hope by Danyelle Ferguson
The Gifts of Friendship and Hope, (based on the song "Mary, Did You Know?") is about Holly, a mother of two children--one of whom has autism--struggling through her first Christmas as a single mother. 

At the end of yet another difficult day, Holly can't decide if she should use the little energy she has left to clean the kitchen or wrap holiday gifts. Especially when all she really wants is to go upstairs, sink into her bed and embrace the oblivion of sleep. When her best friends from the local Autism Society group arrive armed with treats, ribbon and bows, Holly is reminded that laughter and friendship not only ease away the stress of a crazy day, but add a big dose of hope for the future as well.  

How to Order: 

Notes from Danyelle: I have a limited number of copies of Carol of the Talesavailable if you'd like an autographed copy. Please visit my website to order.Otherwise, check out these Amazon links below.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Homemade Yogurt and Waffles at a Writers' Retreat

This past week I attended the Authors Incognito writers' retreat held in the beautiful mountains east of Heber, Utah. For my food contribution I brought some of my homemade honey vanilla yogurt. I also brought some frozen peaches from my tree and the makings for my whole wheat waffles. (Okay, so the picture shows my favorite way to eat them at home--with fresh strawberries and bananas). Everyone loved them. So much so, they asked for the recipes. What a better way to share them than to share them with all my blog followers.

In mixing bowl combine:
1 cup freshly ground whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon powdered milk
1/8 tsp. nutmeg (optional)

in a liquid measuring cup place:
1 to 2 tsp yogurt
add water to the 3/4 cup mark (or omit powdered milk above and use regular milk here)
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Add the liquid to the dry ingredients, add one egg, mix well and pour into heated waffle iron.

A year ago I realized I was buying vanilla yogurt almost every time I went into the supermarket. (I love to eat it for breakfast along with fresh fruit on my homemade whole wheat waffles). So I  tried a few recipes that I found on line, added some things and subtracted other things, coming up with a recipe that I liked. I gave homemade yogurt away for Christmas last year, along with my recipe. All of the recipients loved it.
 It's healthy, tasty, and easy. You just need a candy thermometer, a good sauce pan, an oven that can maintain a temperature of 100 degrees, and the following ingredients:

4 cups of fresh milk
1/3 cup powdered milk
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin (1/2 envelope)

Mix together in a heavy sauce pan with a wire whisk.
Turn the burner to low-medium low and let the milk slowly rise in temperature up to 170 degrees, but DO NOT let the milk come to a boil. Stir occasionally to prevent a film sticking to the bottom of the pan.

When the milk mixture reaches 170, remove from heat and stir in:
1/2 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Let the mixture cool down to between 130 and 120 degrees and add:
1 teaspoon instant pectin (for making freezer jams)
2 tablespoons sugar
(mix the two above ingredients together first to aid in the distribution of the pectin. You can omit this step, but the yogurt might be a little thinner and less sweet).

When the mixture reaches a temperature between 112 and 108, add:
1/2 cup of yogurt starter. (Use plain or vanilla. You can reserve a 1/2 cup from your previous batch of yogurt).

Mix well with wire whisk. Strain and pour into containers. I like to use Pyrex bowls that come with lids, but I have found that used yogurt containers work, as long as they have snap on lids.

Put the lids on the containers and place in a pre-heated 100 degree oven for 6 to 8 hours. Turn off the heat and let remain in the oven for another 1 to 6 hours, depending on how strong you want the yogurt flavor.

Refrigerate and enjoy.