Pips Lemon Christmas- A Guest Post From Teagan Riordain Geneviene
Happy New Year Everyone. On the first day of 2017 I wanted to do something special, not only are we starting a brand new year but this is my 5th year of blogging, in a few days will be the anniversary of A Pug In The Kitchen. Last year for my anniversary post I invited Teagan of Teagan’s Books to guest post and I had so much fun doing it I decided I would ask her again to collaborate with me. Teagans books are special, she takes me to a happy place with characters that come to life, mystical, magickal and a little bit of the supernatural are woven into stories that are so beautiful I honestly can’t and don’t want to stop reading. Whether it’s her amazing serials or a novel she never disappoints. Teagan graciously penned this snippet with one of my favorite characters, Pip a flapper from the 1920’s. In doing some research of food in that era, citrus, specifically lemons were very popular so thats what we did, incorporated lemons not only into this delightful snipppet but also into a recipe for a lemony dessert. I found a recipe for a lemon pound cake from the 1920’s that was served at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in their tea room. The cake was a disaster, it stuck to the bottom of the pan and didn’t come out in one piece, but I didn’t let that deter me, I managed to salvage the cake, turning it upside down (the top of the bundt cake was missing) and serving it with a lemon sauce, like a lemon pudding cake, sort of. I hope you all enjoy what Teagan has written for us all and again wishing all of you a joyous, healthy, happy and prosperous 2017. Take it away Teagan.
Pip’s Lemon Christmas
It had been a grand and glorious year. However, it pos-i-lute-ly had ups and downs. At that moment I was in one of the downs. Even the long distance telephone call from my best friend Mona failed (miserably I might add) to cheer me. She might not be sure where she wanted her future to go, but at least it was going somewhere. All my friends were moving forward, going somewhere. Me? It didn’t look like I would ever get anywhere.
Not only was I going nowhere, I seemed to be going there all by myself. Worse, it was Christmastime. Even my Pops suddenly had to go up north on business. I offered to go and keep him company… Okay, so I begged.
“Young ladies have no place at business meetings,” he told me in the stern, no nonsense voice that meant I wouldn’t get anywhere with my plea.
Idly, I looked at the lace covered table, lemons artfully arranged as a centerpiece. I took one of the tangy fruits, tossed it in the air and caught it. I pondered as I tossed the lemon.
What would any self-respecting flapper do in such a situation? Refuse to be a sourpuss, that’s what a flapper would do!
I decided as I tossed the lemon. If all I had for Christmas was lemons, then I’d make lemonade — so to speak, especially after I found the bottle of hooch Pops had squirreled away. I would have rather had the champagne I knew he hid some place, but that had been ages ago and I couldn’t remember where I saw it.
Gin will do just fine, I told myself.
Suddenly inspired, I gave the yellow fruit a final toss. I went to the shoebox that held Granny’s recipes. She had given me instructions for all sorts of citrus treats, and I was a sourpuss with a sweet tooth.
A little while later I was cleaning up the kitchen as it filled with citrusy baking aromas. Just as I picked up the remains of my lemons, a loud knock pounded at the front door. It startled me so badly that I ran to the door with barely a wipe to my juice drenched hands.
“Delivery!” the words came with another thunderous knock.
I threw open the door and the cool December air hit my face. It was downright brisk, for Florida anyway. There was a truck in the driveway and a young man with a name embroidered on his jacket — Ronny. I took the package, barely looking at the guy who handed it to me. My hands tore at the twine excitedly, even before I went inside. Meanwhile Ronny the delivery man wrote something on the receipt clamped to his clipboard.
“If you’ll sign here, Miss?” he asked.
There was a card inside the package from my friend Mona. The front of it said “I’m sorry you’re alone at Christmas.” Hurriedly I stuck the edge of the note between my teeth and tucked the package under my arm so I could take the clipboard and sign the form.
Only then did I notice what a cutie the guy was. He tilted his head all the way to his shoulder and read aloud the note while I signed. As soon as I heard him speak the words, I blushed scarlet. To make matters worse, he made a sympathetic aww sound that made me feel like a six year-old.
In my flustered flurry of motions, taking the note from my teeth, trying to stick it back in the package, and pushing my hair back… wouldn’t you know I touched a lemon coated finger to my face. I yelped as the citrus stung my eyes. It made tears stream down my cheeks.
The guy sounded guilty when he pleaded to know what the matter was, as if he had caused it. The only word I could manage to utter was, “Lemons!”
He pulled my hand away from my face and lightly sniffed it. He gave a little chuckle that made me want to bean him.
“Yep, that’s lemons all right. For a minute there I was afraid you got bad news,” he commented. “But I guess being alone on Christmas Eve is bad enough.”
For some reason his comment made me lose my composure. I burst out in real tears and sobs, no longer caused by the stinging citrus. I plopped down on the porch and sat there with the package in my lap. This upset poor Ronny. He started blabbering apologies, clearly unsure of why he was asking for forgiveness.
“Look sweet cakes, you’re my last delivery. Let me help you wash your face and get rid of that lemon juice before you put your fingers in your eyes again,” he offered in a contrite voice.
I insisted that it was okay, and with a sniffle, silenced my sobs. Too embarrassed to look at him I turned my attention back to Mona’s gift. Her card had fallen, but Ronny picked it up and handed it to me. I took it from him and with a deep breath I spoke the words that humiliated me a moment before.
“I’m sorry you’re alone at Christmas,” I read the elegant script on the outside, and then opened the card. “So you’ll just have to make your own party.”
What? Digging through the packing paper I found two sparkling etched crystal goblets. I held up one of the glasses to watch the light play on it. I looked at Ronny, feeling utterly bemused. He returned my gaze with a twinkle in eyes that I suddenly noticed were a heavenly shade of blue.
Ronny picked up the other empty glass and playfully tapped it against the one I held. I suddenly remembered where Pops hid the bubbly.
Copyright © 2016 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
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Pound Cake With Lemon Sauce
You can use homemade cake or just go buy Sara Lee Pound Cake for this. The star is really this pucker worthy lemony sauce served over the cake. It couldn’t be easier to make and has only a few ingredients.
Adapted from a recipe on Epicurious
2/3 cup sugar
2 1/2-3 tbs cornstarch
1 1/2 cup water
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
zest of 2 lemons
1 tbs unsalted butter
Whisk sugar and cornstarch in heavy bottom non reactive saucepan, add the water and cook over medium high heat until mixture thickens and starts to boil, add the lemon juice and zest and continue cooking until it comes to a boil again and immediately remove from the heat, add the butter and whisk until combined. Refrigerate until slightly thickened and serve. It can be made a day ahead just bring to room temperature before serving.
Dear Suzanne, I had so much fun working with you! It was a delight. I’m sorry the cake was not as expected, but you just proved how extraordinarily talented you are as a chef, to make something delicious and lovely out of it. The photos are exquisite. You set a gorgeous table. Happy New Year, my friend. Mega hugs.
Happy New Year to you and thank you for lending your talent to my little blog. I so appreciate it and thank you also for the kind words. Mega massive hugs!!!
…so the moral of the story is (at least to me) when life hands you 🍋 lemons 🍋 search real hard for the champagne 🍾
Or in my case the vodka 🍸
🎉 HAVE a MAGICKAL 2017 🎉
LOL, yes that seems to be the moral of the story here, vodka, yep thats a great choice. Wishing for you a magickal 2017, where everything you desire becomes reality. Let’s clink a glass (martini?) to the new year. Thank you so much.
1 for you 🍸 and 1 for me 🍸
…the best always to you and your dog
Lemonade is good, but I’m always ready for champagne. 😀
Teagan, I laughed out loud at “…a sourpuss with a sweet tooth.” Suzanne, the pictures are professional quality. I think you also have a second calling besides cooking and baking. Loved the post and recipe. Oh, and the delivery guy! ❤ Happy New Year to all!
I agree completely about Suzanne’s photos, Mary. I’m always stunned. Glad I could give you a giggle, and I thought you’d approve of Ronny. Mega hugs.
Happy New Year!
Happy New Year Cheryl.
What a wonderful story from you and Teagan, I loved it! I am most certain Pip and Ronny shared a drink (or more) that day. Happy New Year Suzanne and Percy!!!
I’m happy you enjoyed my little story, Kathryn. I’m still dreaming of the posole you posted! Hugs.
What a fun story , Happy New Year to both of you.
I’m delighted you enjoyed my story, Gerlinde. Suzanne’s photos brought it to life. Happy New Year to you too!
I thoroughly enjoyed that, thank you Suzanne for sharing. A very Happy New Year to you and Percy, I wish you both a fantastic and wonderful 2017.
Suzanne, I know it is still the holiday season, but have you had any luck finding little Luna a home? Shame, she sounds like a real cutie pie.
Hi Lynne, Happy to report that Luna is safe in the hands of a wonderful foster mom who is with Mid Atlantic Pug rescue. She is going to the vet today but I am so thrilled to report that since Luna has been at the foster she has not had one seizure, she is happy and healthy and thriving. Soon she will be ready to be adopted and I am confident she will find a loving forever home. There are already people waiting in line to adopt her permanently. Thank you so much for asking about Luna. They report she is the sweetest most loving little dog😁
Suzanne, you have honestly made my day 🙂 Thanks so much for letting me know. Little Luna has been on my mind ever since you posted about her, and it is just such a pity I live so far away. Thanks again. x
What a hilarious post – you two should try out stand up comedy, you’d make a fab double act! Happy New Year!
LOL. That would be a blast, Ginger. I’m pleased to meet you. Glad you enjoyed this collaboration. Hugs.
Fun post Suzanne– a little New Years reading! Is the Teague bookish in your neighborhood? We don’t have real independent bookshops around here. and the pound cake looks beautiful, elegant the way you have it served up. Looking forward to reading all your posts in 2017! Hope it’s the best year ahead for you dear Suzanne… xox
Happy New Year Rhonda. No this is Teagan who is a writer and has a blog. Thank you so much. In our neighborhood we have a few independant bookstores that I love. I generally frequent them rather than the big box stores like Barnes and Noble.
Hey Suzanne– love seeing your face come up here! You’re neighborhood is the best! All we have is our Barnes & Noble– Vroman’s book store (50 minutes up the freeway) is my favorite-big rambling old shop with great displays and staff picks. In any case, happy reading!! Hope you have a lovely weekend. xox
Hi Rhonda. I’m happy you enjoyed my little story. It’s always such a delight to work with Suzanne. Unfortunately my books are only available via Amazon.com. But “Pip” has the first of her novellas there, and another coming this spring. Happy New Year to you and yours. Hugs.
Lovely to be introduced to your writing Teagan– I agree that Suzanne is delightful!! Happy News Year ahead for you too.
I loved this cool guest post! thanks for that & Happy 2017! xxx
Thank you Sophie and Happy New Year.
Hi Sophie. I’m delighted you enjoyed my story. It was huge fun to work together with Suzanne on this post. Hugs!
Suzanne and Teagan I can not believe I missed this wonderful post. [Well I can since I am still going through my spam for e-mails from Jan 1-3.] Belated happy anniversary and Happy New Year Suzanne.
Thank you Dyanna, Happy New Year to you!!
Thanks so very much, Dyanna. Happy New Year hugs.
Know what’s better than one amazing thing? Two amazing things! A wonderful collaboration! And not sour in any way shape or form, despite all the lemonyness.😉
What a delightful surprise to find in my mailbox this morning!
Happy Anniversary to you, Suzanne and happy weekend to both you and Teagan!!!
Mega King Tut lemons which made me think of Steve Martin singing King Tut which made me already wide smile even wider hugs xoxoxo
You know Donna, thinking of Steve Martin singing King Tut made me smile too! Thank you so much and a very Happy New Year to you!! You always put a smile on my face.
I wasn’t familiar with that video, so double thanks Donna for mentioning it (and causing me to Google). It’s hysterical. Thank you kindly my friend. Suzanne is inspiring and so are you! Hugs.
Happy New Year to you Suzanne and Teagan, beautiful table and beautiful story.
Thank you Valentina. Suzanne’s table is just dazzling! I’m glad you enjoyed the little vignette. Hugs.
Loved, loved the story, what a great idea to combine forces. My lemon tree is bursting at the seams, will have to try your lemon sauce.
That makes me so happy, Cheri. Oh, and I’m 100% envious of your lemon tree. Hugs!
What a lovely and funny post! Happy anniversary! I can’t wait to see what you will cook in 2017! 🙂
You will not know me, I hopped over from Teagans place.. firstly Happy Anniversary.. and secondly Happy New Year to you. And thirdly.. wonderful that you and Teagan teamed up again for this wonderful New Years posting..
Just loved reading her story..
And Last but not least.. You have a most wonderful Blog..
Have a wonderful Year a head.. May it be filled with all things Beautiful..
Hugs and Blessings
I know I’m late in stopping by, but Teagan & Suzanne, this looks divine! Hope you both have had a very happy Holiday!