The clock is winding closer and closer to April 26 – and I’ve got the most delicious cover to reveal for The Omega Nanny. R.A. Steffan, who designed the cover for The Country Omega, has designed a beautiful cover for my newest release, and I’m super excited to share it with you!
I’m not one for “casting” my books (that is, finding models or actors who match my characters), but I have to say I love the cover models Steffan found for Thomas and Kieran. I love how Thomas is looking right at me (and that open shirt collar! Hnnngggg, yes please), and I totally want to sink my hands into Kieran’s hair.
I particularly like that Steffan included the coffee shop background – because while I’ve never been a big coffee drinker (I have to add so much milk and sugar, it ceases to be coffee and instead becomes frappuccino), I love a good coffee shop. More to the point, I love writing in a good coffee shop! For a while, I had an app on my laptop that basically played background coffee shop noise so you could pretend you were in a coffee shop instead of at home (or at work, or anywhere else that was sadly not a coffee shop).
Of course, I couldn’t write about a coffee shop and not experiment in my own kitchen with what The Coffee Pot’s manager, Cameron, serves her customers! One of the drinks Cameron tries out is a molasses-flavored chocolate and coffee concoction. If you’ve never baked or cooked with molasses – it’s the super sweet syrup that makes gingerbread taste fantastic, and when mixed with warmed milk, it ends up tasting like a spicy, caramelized, super-sweet drinkable memory of Christmas.
(Fanciful? Sure. Accurate? Oh yeah.)
Neither Cameron nor Kieran can think of a good name for their creation – but maybe you can. Here’s the recipe, if you want to give it a try. If you don’t own a French press, prepare the coffee as you normally would, but brew it with the cocoa added to the grounds. If you don’t own a French press – and you’re only a sometime-drinker like me – they’re fantastic because you can pick up a basic one for under $15 at a local discount housewares supply store, it doesn’t take up a lot of space, and you can use it for other things like tea or cocoa.
Cameron's Chocolate and Molasses Coffee
- 2 tablespoons coffee grounds
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 10 ounces hot water
- 2-4 teaspoons molasses
- 1/4 cup half-and-half
- Combine coffee grounds and cocoa powder in a French press. Add hot water, cover, and brew for 5-8 minutes. (Do NOT let the press touch the top of the liquid. It won’t disturb the brewing process, but it can result in grounds filtering into your finished drink. The longer the brew, the stronger the coffee will be.)
- While the coffee is brewing, mix the molasses and half-and-half in your favorite large mug. (16oz is perfect.)
- When the brewing is complete, depress the filter on the French press. Slowly pour out the coffee into the prepared mug. Stir and enjoy!
You can add additional flavoring – such as ground cinnamon, a caramel drizzle, or whipped cream (topped with a caramel drizzle and ground cinnamon even). You can also stir the drink with a cinnamon stick if you want to be fancy!
So can you think of a fancy title for the drink? If you do, let me know – and if I like it, I might just put you in one of my upcoming novels!