My Kentucky Kitchen

May 20, 2017 | Comment on This

Here are 2 simple recipes passed down from my great-grandmother, Louise, a Kentuckian who farmed just down the road from where we live now. I think of her often as I’m in my kitchen. I sometimes wonder what she’d think of me in this tiny cabin a hundred years later making her cornbread and fried apples?


1 egg

1 cup buttermilk

1 cup self-rising cornmeal (I use White Lily)

2 tablespoons bacon grease or vegetable oil


Beat egg with wire whisk and add buttermilk till well blended. Stir in cornmeal. Add grease or oil and stir till mixed well. Pour into small, greased cast iron skillet (a loaf pan will do). Bake 425 for 20 minutes or till golden brown. Slather with butter.


4 good cooking apples (Granny Smith works well)

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch salt


Peel, core, and slice apples like you would for pie. Melt butter in large skillet. When butter is melted, add apples. Mix in pan to coat all apple slices. After a couple of minutes, sprinkle with brown sugar, cinnamon, and pinch salt. Continue stirring at intervals till apples are desired softness and somewhat carmelized.


New Newsletter!

April 24, 2017 | Comment on This

If you’re new to my website, I’d be honored to have you sign up for my monthly newsletter! I’ll always have fresh book news, reader photos, what I’m reading, a glimpse of life at the cabin, and giveaways. Here’s the link ~

Laura’s Newsletter

Thank you ~ and happy reading!

My Kentucky Kitchen ~ Good Morning Muffins!

April 24, 2017 | Comment on This


  • Ingredients:
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 cup grated parsnips
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup dark raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  • Position rack in center of oven and preheat the oven to 350º F. If not using muffin cups then grease the wells of the muffin pan with the butter and set aside.
  • Sift the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt into a mixing bowl. Stir in the carrots, parsnips, raisins, pecans, coconut, and apple.
  • In another bowl, combine the eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract and whisk until smooth.
  • Add the wet mixture to the flour mixture and stir until the batter is just blended.
  • Spoon equal amounts of the batter into the wells.
  • Bake until the muffins spring back to the touch and are golden brown, about 35 minutes.
  • Using oven mitts or pot holders, carefully remove the muffins from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes.
  • ENJOY!
  • Emeril’s There’s a Chef in my Soup!

My Kentucky Kitchen ~ Southern Salad for Two

March 22, 2017 | Comment on This

I’m such a fan of this salad. It’s so pretty in a glass bowl and can be made ahead for company if you double or triple the recipe. We’ve enjoyed it for Easter and it’s become a summer staple when vegetables are at their peak. Feel free to be creative and add or subtract ingredients like cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, sweet or red onion, radishes, jalapenos, cucumbers, etc. Be extra creative!

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon dry ranch dressing mix
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon half and half or milk or buttermilk (yep, buttermilk for me;)
2 cups shredded lettuce (your fave is fine, I prefer butter lettuce and iceburg, even a little spinach)
4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
4 boiled eggs
1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
1/4 cup sliced celery
3-4 slices cooked bacon, chopped
1/2 cup cheddar or cheese of choice, shredded
Sliced green onion or your favorite chopped fresh herbs (mine are dill and parsley) to garnish
Salt and pepper

Mix the mayo, ranch dressing mix, sugar, and half and half or milk or buttermilk; set aside.

In a small, clear glass bowl, add half of the shredded lettuce then tomatoes, starting around the outside edges and working toward the middle. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Slice enough of the boiled eggs to line completely around the outside of the dish first, then chop the remaining eggs and sprinkle them around the inside on top of the tomatoes. Add the peas then celery. Next add another layer of lettuce, then the chopped bacon and shredded cheese. Dollop the dressing over the top and spread evenly till the salad’s edges, sealing the salad.

Cover tightly with saran wrap or lid. Refrigerate up to 24 hours.

Before serving, add sliced green onions and herbs to garnish. Toss if you like or just dole out with salad tongs.



My Kentucky Kitchen ~ Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup

February 15, 2017 | Comment on This

If you’re new to my site, I’m cooking up something brand new in 2017 ~ my  newsletter! Since I’m always searching for fresh ways to connect with readers, this seems like a fun way to do it…

To sign up, please go to the little letter icon on the home page and simply enter your email address or follow this link here. Newsletter subscribers receive book news in advance, a monthly giveaway, and more! I’ll also be including a favorite family recipe from My Kentucky Kitchen each month.

For the February launch, here’s a soup recipe our family enjoys wintry nights with a green salad & crusty bread:

2 garlic cloves (chopped)
1 small onion (chopped)
2 (15 ounce) cans diced fire-roasted tomatoes
2 (10 3/4 ounce) cans tomato soup
2 (10 ounce) cans milk (use soup can)
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried basil
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can chicken broth
3 tablespoons Italian-style tomato paste
1⁄2 cup light cream or 1⁄2 cup half-and-half
1⁄4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 (9 ounce) package cheese tortellini

In soup pot, heat olive oil then add onion and garlic. Saute till soft over medium heat.

Add canned diced tomatoes, broth, tomato paste, basil, tomato soup, and the milk. Stir well till blended.

Simmer for 25 minutes.

Add light cream and parmesan cheese.

Lastly, add tortellini and cook about 15 minutes or until tender.


MOONBOW sighting!

January 8, 2017 | Comment on This


It’s hard to believe that we’re saying HAPPY NEW YEAR & MOONBOW in the same breath. After 7 summer/fall releases, having a book come out in winter is kind of cozy. Today I’m sitting by the fire at the cabin & all is quiet after a very merry release party in Berea, Kentucky for A MOONBOW Night this past weekend at Robie Books.

I couldn’t have done it without my wonderful realtor & his wife & the help of several good Kentucky relatives & friends. Many thanks to all the readers who attended, some who came across the state to celebrate! In keeping with this frontier novel I even wore a buckskin jacket & had heroine hair:)

Those who couldn’t be there were with us in spirit. Thanks to all of you who’ve supported this very historical novel by picking it up at your local bookstore, ordering, or asking your local library to order. You’re the reason I write. So hope you enjoy Tempe’s story 1777-style!

Merry Christmas Giveaway!

December 14, 2016 | Comment on This


Celebrating not one but two historical fiction releases on January 3, 2017!

The Mark of a King by Jocelyn Green!

Sweeping Historical Fiction Set at the Edge of the Continent
After being imprisoned and branded for the death of her client, twenty-five-year-old midwife Julianne Chevalier trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling 1720s French colony of Louisiana, where she hopes to be reunited with her brother, serving there as a soldier. To make the journey, though, women must be married, and Julianne is forced to wed a fellow convict.
When they arrive in New Orleans, there is no news of Benjamin, Julianne’s brother, and searching for answers proves dangerous. What is behind the mystery, and does military officer Marc-Paul Girard know more than he is letting on?
With her dreams of a new life shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous, rugged land, despite never being able to escape the king’s mark on her shoulder that brands her a criminal beyond redemption.

A Moonbow Night by Laura Frantz

On the Kentucky frontier of the 1770s, Temperence Tucker has learned to be fleet of foot, accurate with her bow, and silent about her past. But her family secrets complicate her growing attraction to a handsome Virginia land surveyor with a harsh history of his own. Will the hurts and hardships of the past prevent them from a fulfilling future?

To enter, please leave a comment below and tell us what page you’re on & what you’re currently reading! Winner drawn 12/31/16…

A very Merry Christmas to you from the two of us!

Open House

December 4, 2016 | Comment on This

It’s been a dream of mine to hold an open house at our Kentucky cabin. Trouble is, it’s so tiny that guests would have to come in small batches. Not only that, only the most intrepid make it up our very steep driveway.  I could write a book on all the escapades of  poor folks trying to reach the top & failing. When it snows, we can’t reach the top either in our all wheel drive so have to hoof it, groceries & schoolbooks & all. But it’s so worth it in the end.

So if I could I’d invite you to our Christmas open house. You’d find cider simmering on the stove & some Kentucky-made treats. We’d sit by the fire & talk about how good God is to give us friends & Christmas & these little bits of heaven on earth. I might play a carol or two on the dulcimer & Paul might pick I saw the Light on his banjo. Randy would bring more firewood & Wyatt would stand by in case the place burned down (he’s a firefighter in real life). If it got too crowded you could wrap up in a quilt and sit on the porch in the swing or rocking chair.  I can just imagine it. The next best thing is pretending, I guess.

Hope & pray your Christ*mas is extra blessed. From our cabin to yours…


Log Cabin Christmas

December 1, 2016 | Comment on This


Happy December 1st!

We’re excited to spend our first log cabin Christmas here in Kentucky. God is so gracious! Never would I have thought it possible to live and work on the same road my great-grandparents began farming in the 19th-century, a small mountain between us. I drive by their old home place every day when they used horse and wagon or carriage to travel about.

This is truly a new chapter, a new season for us. Many blessings alongside many challenges with our family living and working on different coasts, my parent’s failing health, & the work increasing. I know many of you find yourself in a whole new story clouded by loss & health issues & heartbreak & change. When I hear from you about these things I pray for you.

The older I become the more I long for things that can’t be bought at Christmas or any time of year.

In the words of C.S. Lewis, “…I was made for another world. If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud. Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing. If that is so, I must take care on the one hand, never to despise, or to be unthankful for, these earthly blessings, and on the other, never to mistake them for the something else of which they are only a kind of copy or echo, or mirage. I must keep alive in myself the desire for my true country, which I shall not find till after death; I must never let it get snowed under or turned aside; I must make it the main object of life to press on to that country and to help others do the same.”

*Mere Christianity

Lady of the Woods

November 18, 2016 | Comment on This