Monday, September 2, 2013

The Whole Enchilada - Latest Just Out from Diane Mott Davidson - With Davidson You Get Recipes!

Enchiladas Suizas

12 corn tortillas
1/3 cup olive oil


2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken, dark and light meat, skin and bones removed
2 1/4 cups crema (homemade sour cream, also known as creme fraiche, recipe follows) or commercial sour cream
2 cups grated mild or medium cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon kosher salt


2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped onions
2 tablespoons minced garlic
14 1/2 ounces diced Italian-style (with garlic, basil, and oregano) tomatoes (Check contents of can. You may need more than one can.)
9 ounces (contents of two 4 1/2 ounce cans) chopped fire-roasted mild chiles
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Additional crema or sour cream for topping -- More instructions in the book, just out!!!

The Whole Enchilada
By Diane Mott Davidson

It's been awhile since I've had a Killer Pancake or a Tough Cookie with this author, so I was pleased to have the opportunity to read her latest! Now some of you may know I don't cook! LOL So be assured I read
Cover of "Killer Pancake (Goldy Culinary ...
Cover via Amazon
Davidson for the great mysteries. And I could be wrong, but I think this latest just might be one of her best!
Ok, it must be, because I was unable to pick out the killer, so you can plan on a very complex novel with more bad guys to choose from to make that final, "I gotcha!" moment. If you do guess ahead, leave me a comment and tell me what the deciding clue was for you, cause I sure missed it.

Goldie, as many followers will know, has a catering business. There is even a Goldie wanna-be that readers will immediately hate in this novel! This wanna-be has stolen Goldie's identity by creating her own business, dressing like Miss G and buying a van just like her. Then she started calling people and offering to undercut her price or to "partner" on an event... How rude! Even if not totally illegal!

Not exactly the dish...but you get idea!
" vegetarian assistant, Julian
Teller, had set himself to the task of
making chile relleno tortas. In his
midtwenties, Julian was compact,
muscled, handsome and perpetually
grizzled-looking. Although I tried
not to taste my own cooking to season
it, when Julian tossed together cheeses,
picante, and chiles, then poured a
smooth mixture of eggs and cream
on top, my mouth watered. Once the
first batch of pies came out, I knew I
would want to find a large spoon and
dig in...

This book features the birthday party of Goldie's son, Arch, and a best friend, Drew Ingleby. And the theme is a Tex-Mex Potluck Buffet! Yummy! Let's hone in on some of the other main dishes besides the Enchiladas, including Vegetarian Chile Relleno Tortas, Dulce de Leche Ice Cream, and Arroz con Pollo...Ok, those are the menu items that I've never tasted, so I thought I'd check on those more! LOL

"My friend Holly Ingleby died after a party I'd
organized. She collapsed while walking with her
son, Drew, to her car--less than a block from the
house belonging to another close friend, Marla
Korman. I knew I shouldn't have blamed myself.
But I did...
"The whole thing was supposed to have been
carefree and fun.
"What was the opposite of carefree and fun? That
"When I saw Holly lying inert on the pavement,
an icy abyss opened in my chest. Tom, my second
husband--as wonderful as the first one had been
horrific--grasped my shoulders to keep me from
pitching onto the concrete where Holly lay.
"Afterward, I thought, That could have been me.
Note: click for recipe not in book
"Drew seemed to recover from his father's
unexpected appearance, followed by his
swift disappearance. He and Arch blew out
all the candles on the sheet cake. Julian
and I scooped out dulce de leche ice cream
until my arm ached. Julian's swimming-
strengthened arms never appeared to be
bothered by anything...
"Even Holly, who had seemed unsettled by
the appearances of the uninvited stranger,
then George and Lena, began to laugh and
enjoy herself. To be honest, I would have
been upset, too, if my ex-husband had made
a scene and I were being stalked by a "nutty
"...Holly giggled with friends and said no
thanks to cake topped with ice cream. Then
I realized I hadn't seen her eat any dinner...
When the boys tore into their last gifts...
I noticed Holly spoon up a minuscule 
amount of Mexican food. Well, at least
she wouldn't go home hungry...

Thrown in because...! LOL
Ophelia (Not the one in this book)
"The party we were doing Monday 
night was a surprise twenty-first-birthday
celebration for Neil's painfully shy,
awkward daughter, Ophelia...
"During the planning of Ophelia's party, I'd
nodded politely as Neil gave me his
homily on The Decline of Everything.
I'd kept my lips buttoned, which showed
showed unusual restraint on my part, if
I did say so myself...
Marla Korman, a friend of Holly had volunteered her home for the birthday being planned for Arch and Drew. This was a big help since Holly only had to worry about the food.

As she worked on the prep for the enchiladas, she was remembering when both she and Holly had been in the maternity ward...and realized that they both had a right to be depressed--both of their doctor husbands had not bothered to show up! Now called "The Jerk," Goldie had not been surprised that he skipped the ordeal... and she was well rid of him, especially when she now had her loving Tom!

You may already know, if you are a fan, that Goldie's other best friend is also an ex of The Jerk! At least a good friendship came out of that mess, right? LOL

But while they had all been newly divorced, they had become friend in a very small group called Amour Anonymous... Now the notes of those meetings were being reviewed! Hoping to discover who hated Holly enough to kill her... Yes, that night as Holly and Drew were leaving the party, Holly had dropped to the ground and, although they had tried to resuscitate her, she had died. But that's getting ahead of the story...

I was happy to see that Julian Teller was working with Goldie in this book. He's a welcome addition any time, but I was pleased to see that there was a female connection at the end, so fans will be looking forward to seeing what comes of that!

At the same time they were planning the birthday party food, they were also looking at the church fund-raising event, with a special topic, "Plan your Funeral"... I don't know about you, but I registered the same concern about that topic for fund-raising... LOL But they all loved the elderly Father Pete and would work hard to ensure the food was great!

I'm not going to get into the birthday party--just think "Potluck" and realize that from the moment people started to arrive, including Goldie and Julian, that there were lots of people and at least one stranger that Goldie almost hit with her van and who later showed up, who were coming and going in the food area!

Then Drew's father, and his new wife, showed up! They had not been invited, so they just came...

Well you can just imagine what type of exchanges occurred.

Goldie was still in shock after Holly's death, when she began to learn more about what had been happening in Holly's recent past. Marla had known but Holly had asked her not to say anything to Goldie. And Holly, at the party, had promised her that she wanted to talk and share...

Now it was too late!

And then Father Pete and the wanna-be Goldie caterer were attacked at the church! The caterer was killed, but Father Pete was now in the hospital in a coma, with everybody praying for his recovery. The church dinner moved from a small number to over 100, and Goldie and Julian quickly and efficiently dealt with the expanded number...but, as with the birthday party, it was not a happy event...

And there was still one more party to arrange for...Ophelia...
Now this is a short sub-plot which I completely loved! And I'm not going to tell you a thing about it, except she's the woman Julian is interested in... What a cool addition to this murder mystery!!!

Well, as mentioned, I never got close to naming the killer, nor did Goldie was...too late...and she was looking at him, in a mask, wearing gloves and holding a gun in his hand...

Great Mystery and I loved it!

In an interview, links below, the author said she liked the idea of matching food, cooking and fun with the darkness of murder. I agree that it is much more palatable than lots of murder mysteries...

But not as much as, say, two enchiladas sent via email??? What say you, Diane??? I'm suggesting your latest is your best ever and highly recommended...  Oh, could you include a little of that Not-so-Skinny Spinach Dip...and of course the chips to dip! LOL


P.S. I wouldn't consider that a bribe since I already wrote my review...would you?

New York Times bestselling author Diane Mott Davidson wrote three novels before one was accepted for publication—when she was 41. She has since written 14 more mysteries, all featuring Goldy the caterer. In addition, she has written short stories and poetry for various publications. Davidson has won the Anthony Award from Bouchercon, and has been nominated for the Agatha, another Anthony, and the Macavity Award. In 1993 she was named Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers' Writer of the Year.
Davidson was educated at St. Anne's School in Charlottesville, Virginia, where her English teacher, Emyl Jenkins, encouraged her to become a writer. She attended Wellesley College, where she was named a Wellesley Scholar, before transferring to Stanford University, from which she graduated with a double major in Art History and Political Science. Several years (and one child) later, she received her MA in Art History from Johns Hopkins.
Davidson has volunteered for numerous organizations. She was a tutor in a correctional facility, rape-victim counselor, and served for 10 years on the Board of Examining Chaplains of the Episcopal Diocese of Colorado. For years she taught the adult Bible study at her parish, where she was also licensed to preach.
Davidson has been married to her husband, Jim, for almost 40 years. They have three sons, a daughter-in-law, two grandchildren, and a basset hound.
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