When I wrote Souls Estranged I included blueberry buckle as one of several tasty homemade treats Ruby bakes. Ruby's character is an elderly nurse who takes Sam under her wing as he recovers from his broken shoulder. Her take charge attitude and skills in the kitchen are traits of my grandmother and mother all wrapped together. I needed a character suited for Katarina to entwine within and Ruby became the perfect choice. No, my mom never owned a cherry red Oldsmobile muscle car like the one in the story, but she has been known to call many of her cars, "Nellie" at one time or another.
Here is a little excerpt from Chapter Four with Sam, Gretta, and Ruby...
“Lunch is almost ready. Here’s a list of Sam’s pre-surgery instructions.” Ruby handed the paper to Gretta. “Tim and I both have to work tomorrow so you’ll need to keep him in line.”
Sam heard the two discussing the dos and don’ts prior to his operation, yet his mind registered one thing.
Alone time with Gretta.
Gretta scrutinized the list. “What about this one?”
“Never mind,” Ruby chortled.
Gretta walked over to the kitchen and opened a drawer. Finding it empty, she smiled at Ruby. “I could have cleaned the drawers.”
“What did you say?” Ruby lifted a square of gooey lasagna from the pan.
“You crossed ‘clean drawers’ off my list.” Gretta pointed to the paper.
“No, no dear. I meant—”
“Ruby?” Sam wasn’t sure how he knew what she was going to say, but he definitely didn’t want her to continue.
“I crossed it off, Sam. After I caught you two on the couch, I wrote a list for Tim. He will make certain you have on clean—”
“Oh, hush yourself and eat.” She handed them two heaping plates.
Gretta and Sam slid into the chairs at the table. He dug into the steaming layers of pasta, cheese, and sausage. After a minute of silence, Gretta’s grin caught his eye.
“Batman or Spiderman?”
Sam laughed before answering, “Hanes. Plain, white Hanes.” He peered sideways to Ruby and lowered his voice. “Fifteen years ago, Spiderman.”
Gretta smirked, forking a hunk of pasta dripping with cheese. “Spiderman?”
“Spiderman. What about you? Cinderella or Snow White?” He watched her savor her food.
She wiped cheese and sauce off her lips with one finger and licked it clean. “Cinderella.”
In Souls Estranged, Ruby makes a luscious lasagna and amazing apple pie, as well as blueberry buckle---all of these mouth watering treats were inspired by my mom and grandma. Want to make Ruby's Blueberry Buckle? Here's the recipe:
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup milk
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups fresh blueberries
Cream together the sugar and butter. Add the egg and milk until well blended.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add this dry mixture to the creamed mixture and stir until smooth. Fold in the blueberries. Pour into a 9"X9" greased baking pan.
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup firm butter
In a small bowl, cut butter into the sugar and cinnamon until crumbly. Sprinkle over the blueberry cake batter.
Bake at 375 degrees F for about 30 minutes or until center is done. Serve warm.
You can check out Souls Estranged on amazon by clicking on the cover below. I will be blogging more recipes from Souls Estranged over the next few months. To follow my blog simply enter your email address on the right hand column and click SUBSCRIBE.