So, hi there! I’m Ava Miles, the new contemporary romance writer who burst onto the scene with her book NORA ROBERTS LAND, which kicked off my acclaimed Dare Valley series. Now, I’m delighted to announce the first book in a connected series called Dare River, set in the deep South, titled COUNTRY HEAVEN. Thanks to Miss Ivy for hosting me!
This story is pretty special to me since it combines my love for food (former chef here) and my love for country music, specifically Tim McGraw, Carrie Underwood, and the hit TV series, Nashville. COUNTRY HEAVEN is about a down-on-her luck cook who uses food’s magical properties to tame a beastly country singer after he hires her under false pretenses to restore his image. My hero, Rye Crenshaw, is larger than life, a mega country star and a total bad boy. And his heroine is so the girl-next-door.
I wrote thirteen country music songs and a dozen cookbook entries for this book, which is a record in romance, I think. And since I love sharing my love for food, I decided to share one of the cookbook entries from the novel. It involves one of the four main food groups as far as I am concerned: CHOCOLATE. See what you think of this recipe. It’s too good for words, and my hero simply loves it.
When it comes to comfort food on the sweet side, there’s nothing better than combining a chocolate chip cookie flavor in a flaky pie crust. I like to add a little cocoa for extra bite. This sucker is pure decadence and perfect for Sunday dessert with fresh whipped cream or heated to warm on a school night. You can barely keep your eyes open after the first bite, least of all form a complete sentence. It makes even the most sensible senseless. My friend served it when her difficult mother–in–law came for a weekend visit. She gave her guest a piece every day she was there and said it was the only time the woman didn’t find something to complain about. So, if you’re in need of comfort food, chocolate with your pie, or you want to shut someone up—this pie is for you.
Tory’s Chocolate Chip Pie
¾ cup butter
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup flour
2 tbsp. cocoa
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup pecans
Cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs. Mix. Add the flour and cocoa. Stir until combined. Add the chocolate chips. Pour into an already baked pie crust. Cook at 325 degrees for 50 minutes.
Tory Simmons’ Simmering Family Cookbook
Sound good? Well, check out COUNTRY HEAVEN. That recipe is only one of many.
And tell me, what’s your favorite pie? Or dessert with chocolate? I would love to hear!
USA Today Bestselling Author Ava Miles burst onto the contemporary romance scene after receiving Nora Roberts’ blessing for her use of Ms. Roberts’ name in her debut novel, NORA ROBERTS LAND, which kicked off The Dare Valley Series and brought praise from reviewers and readers alike. Much to Ava’s delight, USA Today Contributor Becky Lower selected it as one of the Best Books of the Year. Ava continued The Dare Valley Series in FRENCH ROAST, which Tome Tender says “raised the entertainment bar again” and then THE GRAND OPENING, which reviewer Mary J. Gramlich says “is a continuation of love, family, and relationships.” The next books in the series, THE HOLIDAY SERENADE, was met with high praise and her ode to the early 1960s, THE TOWN SQUARE, what she calls Mad Men in a small town with a happy ending, melted reader’s hearts. Ava based her original series on a family newspaper, modeled after her own. Her great-great grandfather won it in a poker game in 1892, so Ava is no stranger to adventurous men and models her heroes after men like that—or like Tim McGraw, her favorite country music singer. Now Ava shares the Dare River series, set in the deep South, telling the story of a country singer and a beautiful cook. A former chef herself, Ava used her culinary background to infuse the story with family and personal recipes, but she also used her love for music to write country music songs to set the stage in the novel, creating a unique book experience. Ava—a writer since childhood—now lives in her own porch-swinging-friendly community with an old-fashioned Main Street lined with small businesses.
COUNTRY HEAVEN, Book 1, The Dare River Series, by Ava Miles
February 2014/On Sale 2-11-14/$4.99 (eBook), $14.99 (print) ISBN: 978-1-940565-05-7