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My Secret Identity: Mystery Solving Caterer

Can I just begin by telling you what a crazy few days I've just gone through? It all began with a wedding I was catering. The drunken, estranged father-of-the-bride decided to crash the wedding because he wanted to be in his daughter's life. After (unhappy) tears, yelling and a smashed wedding cake...all leading up to an ambulance ride, I might add...the wedding continued without any further interruptions. There was joy and laughter and dancing...oh, and EATING of course! Everybody raved over the food and we even hauled in a hefty tip! This may sound like a lot all packed into a few short hours, but this dear friends was only the start. Two days later I catered another wedding for an evil bridezilla (a job I knew I would regret taking). Can you say last minute changes and additional guests...lots of them! Keep in mind these said changes were communicated to me less than 48 hours before the wedding was to take place. We even had to change kitchens and work in the kitchen of a Spa retreat. Turns out somebody slipped something into the food at this spa (something not so legal)...simultaneously hooking the guests and breaking the law at the same time. My godfather (whom I adore) ended up being seriously injured at this reception. So seriously that it ended in his passing. But, ever the clever one, he left me a clue...a puzzle of sorts. So, I decided I was going to figure out what in the world was going on. I was going BACK undercover. But knowing my loving hubby, I decided to make up some food to put in the cooler first...surely he (oh great detective/cop/law-abiding-citizen that he is) would need a little buttering up when he realized what I was up to. I decided to make him some Chilled Curried Chicken Salad. That should give me a little leeway. Chilled Curried Chicken Salad serves 4-6 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts Himalayan Pink sea salt freshly ground black pepper 2 (11 oz) cans mandarin orange slices, drained 1/2 fresh pineapple, cut into tidbit-sized pieces 1/2 c. raisins 1/2 red onion, chopped fine Dressing: 1 1/2 c. light mayonnaise 1 Tbs. curry powder 2 Tbs. chutney 3/4 tsp. Himalayan Pink Sea Salt 2 Tbs. OIKOS Greek Yogurt, plain variety 2 Tbs. freshly squeezed lime juice Garnish: Spanish Peanuts Romaine Lettuce Cilantro, few leaves Red Onion, thinly sliced Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper and cook on a HOT grill pan until golden and cooked throughout. Set aside to cool. Place all of the dressing ingredients together in a bowl and whisk together until combined thoroughly. Put mandarin oranges, pineapple, raisins and red onion in a bowl. Chop the cooled chicken and add to bowl. Prepare to add dressing. Gently fold in about half of the dressing. Add more until it is coated to your liking. Cover and place in cooler to chill for ~24 hours. Arrange some Romaine lettuce, cilantro leaves and red onion slices on a serving plate. Scoop some of the chilled salad on top. Garnish with as many peanuts as you like. Serve chilled. After the Curried Chicken Salad was chilling, I set off to do some investigating. I finally figured out what my godfather was trying to tell me, but not after being slapped (hard!) across the face by bridezilla and getting a huge lump on the head...from being conked with a lamp. And...OH WAIT!!! THIS WASN'T ME!!! This was my favorite mystery-solving caterer, Ms. Goldy (Baer) Schulz. How silly of me...sometimes I get carried away. Diane Mott Davidson has done it again with her latest novel, Fatally Flaky. I've managed to get myself entwined in the middle of my cherished characters (they're like old friends, ya know?!)...this was actually a little sneak peek into Goldy's latest adventure. The Chilled Curried Chicken Salad is actually one of the recipes included in this book (I have adapted it, but the original is on p.315). Yup, mystery and food all rolled into one. What more could a girl ask for? And it never fails that I want a few cups of coffee while joining in the adventure (if only I had Goldy's Espresso machine). This is Diane Mott Davidson's 14th Goldy Schulz novel. I am totally addicted...I've read them all more times than I can remember. These are just pure fun. My first DMD novel was actually her 7th Goldy mystery (Grilling Season). It was a gift from my grandma one year for Christmas. I had never heard of her and I thought maybe Gram was just getting a little, um...how shall I say it...senile-ish in her old age. Surely she thought she was giving me a cookbook (on grilling). I figured she just saw the grilling and didn't look inside. I sort of put it aside and forgot about it for quite some time. When I mentioned it sometime later, Gram says she knew what it was. She meant to get it for me. (Oops, sorry...not senile. I'm just dense.) So,, one night I picked it up and didn't put it back down until I was finished. The next day I headed straight for the library to get the previous 6 novels in the series. And then I continued on after number 7. Now I own all of them (in paperback and hardcover...why!?). I'm always in such a hurry to get the next novel and I sit down all rippling with excitement...then I see that I'm almost finished and I try to slow down. I can't wait another year (or so)...hurry up Diane. Write Faster!
For the record....I totally think I'd make a great mystery-solving caterer.
Many thanks to Kristina from Stonyfield Farm for sending me coupons for FREE Oikos yogurt...this is the first thing I've used them for (other than eating) so far. More to come...
Also, if you haven't entered my giveaway yet, be sure to head over and do it now!