Woohoo! Today’s the big day! The release of One Dance with a Duke, the first installment in an all-new trilogy. I’m so proud of this book, and of course, I want to have a contest to celebrate!

Usually, I just invite you all to comment to win books. That’s always fun, but I thought I’d do something different today. I’m going to ask you to help feed my family. And in the process, feed some other families.

Bear with me for a moment. There’s a method to this madness, promise.

The heroine of One Dance with a Duke, Amelia, is a true hostess and expert at menu planning. She has a little book of recipes and menus that she keeps, and she takes pride in putting together the perfect meal. Well, this part of her characterization was clearly wish fulfillment on my part. Meal-planning is not my forte–especially not with two picky darelings in the house and three books releasing back-to-back this summer. When dinnertime rolls around, I wish I had Amelia’s little book of recipes and menus. I also wish I had her servants to prepare them.

Since I don’t have those things, I figured…hey, the romance world is full of resourceful individuals. I am here to ask you to give me your family-friendly, time-saving dinner ideas. BUT. They must be easy and simple. So easy and simple that they will fit in one “tweet” (If you don’t use Twitter, this means that typed out they must be 140 characters or less, including spaces).

Here’s an example:

Lazy soup: 64oz can V8, stew beef, cubed veggies, thyme. Put all in slowcooker. Neglect. #recitweet

See, that’s barely 100 characters! Still so many to spare.

If you’re already on Twitter, you can enter by tweeting your recipe with the hashtag #recitweet. If you’re not on Twitter, you can post it here in the comments, and I’ll tweet it for you. Either method enters you to win. If you click here, you can follow all the #recitweet posts, even if you don’t have a Twitter account.

What can you win? Five random winners will receive $10 gift certificates to the online bookstore of their choice (Amazon, BN.com, Borders, MBAM, etc). There are so many great books releasing this week, I can’t even try to match them up with individual winners. This way, the choice is yours. (And if you’d prefer to have my book, I will gladly sign a copy and send it to you!)

In addition, for every tweet with the hashtag #recitweet that shows up on Twitter between now and midnight Pacific tomorrow (Wednesday), I’ll donate $0.25 to Feeding America, up to $250 total. (If you’re doing the math, that’s one thousand tweets to reach $250. We can totally do that, right? If you’re in the mood for more math, every dollar donated to Feeding America helps them get 9 pounds of food to hungry people, so that’s…. more than a ton of food.)

So if this works, I’ll get some new ideas for feeding my family, you may get some new ideas for feeding your family, and we’ll all get some food to people who need it. And hopefully, it will be fun! So please spread the word and get to tweeting your simplest recipes — creativity and humor are welcome and encouraged! I can’t wait to see what you all come up with.

And I hope this all makes sense, but feel free to ask questions if not. 🙂

48 comments to “One Dance in stores today! Contest and giveaway”

  1. Pam Hager
    · May 25th, 2010 at 1:23 am · Link

    3 Pepper Pasta salad

    Bowtie Pasta(16 oz)
    1 red pepper
    1 green pepper
    1 yellow pepper
    Thousand Island dressing
    Add onion if desired
    Cook,chop & serve cold

  2. Maureen
    · May 25th, 2010 at 1:52 am · Link

    Mix 1 cup catalina salad dressing & 1 cup bbq sauce & pour over 3-4 lbs boneless pork ribs in slow cooker 8-9 hrs on low. Serve over rice.

  3. Jim B
    · May 25th, 2010 at 3:33 am · Link

    Love the concept of this contest, not the usual. And thanks for the #recitweet recipes. Mine is up now.

  4. Cheryl Robbins
    · May 25th, 2010 at 3:49 am · Link

    1 can each of Cr. Chicken and Cr. Celery soup
    2 chick bouillon cubes
    4-6 frozen chick breasts
    1 cup water
    pepper to taste
    slow-cooker 4-8 hours

  5. Sara S
    · May 25th, 2010 at 3:50 am · Link

    Poppy Seed Chicken 😛
    1 can cream chicken
    8oz sour cream
    1 lb cubed chicken cooked
    1 Tbsp poppy seeds
    mix & put in baking dish
    top=crushed ritz & melted butter
    350′ 35min

  6. Gillian
    · May 25th, 2010 at 3:55 am · Link

    Ye Gads, the number of releases I need to buy today is astounding! Great contest. I don’t tweet, so here:

    Grill chicken tenderloins-sprinkle with lemon pepper. Chop when done.
    Toss with organic salad greens, red onion, herb croutons, and raspberry vinaigrette.

  7. Sara S
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:06 am · Link

    @Sara S:
    Eek! I forgot – Serve Over Rice! 😉

  8. Cheryl Robbins
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:07 am · Link

    @Cheryl Robbins:
    Serve over rice!

  9. Juli Temple
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:20 am · Link

    I am so excited!!

  10. Sue Brandes
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:52 am · Link

    Frozen roll dough thawed
    Shape into breadsticks
    Sprinkle with garlic powder
    Top with shredded cheeses
    Bake 350 for 5 mins

    Great contest. I love the cover of your book.

  11. Debbie
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:55 am · Link

    1 – 16 oz. bag broccoli florets, 2 – lbs chopped chicken breasts par boiled in water drained. I can cream of mushroom soup, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup milk, crushed ritz crackers.
    place frozen florets in a 9 x 13 pan, add chicken drained. mix soup and milk together, pour on top of chicken add salt and pepper. Sprinkle cheese on top, add crackers, bake 350 for 30 minutes.

  12. Lady Indis Dress
    · May 25th, 2010 at 5:22 am · Link

    I’m so bookmarking this page! :mrgreen: Happy release day, Tessa!

    Molly’s Chili

    1 lb ground beef, browned
    28 oz can of tomatoes (I use stewed but you can use your fav)
    14 oz can red kidney beans
    Spices of your choice.

    Mix and simmer. Serve with cornbread or cornbread muffins.

    This one is easy to double or even triple. It’s also gluten free.

  13. Maryam Handley
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:01 am · Link

    Banana Desert: preheat oven to 350, spray or grease bottom baking dish; halve ripe bananas & place in baking dish cut side up; dot with butter and sprinkle with a bit of brown sugar; bake 10 minutes; serve alone or topped with ice cream.

    Congratulations on new release, and thanks for the chance to participate!!

  14. Stephanie L.
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:02 am · Link

    2 (or more) chicken breasts. In crock pot w/salsa/sour cream/spices/beans. Cook 5 hours. Serve with tortilla chips!

  15. HollieBerrie
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:18 am · Link

    Ahh, I am so excited! =D

    My favorite recipe: Cherry Chiffon Dessert

    21oz. Cherry Pie Filling (you cannot use light, fat free, or any other healthier version…I’ve tried – it doesn’t work =( )
    14oz. sweetened condensed milk
    15oz. crushed pineapple, drained
    8oz. cool whip (again, no healthier options)
    1c. mini marshmallows

    combine ingredients well in large bowl. Chill.

    Makes 12 to 14 servings.
    Prep time: 5mins
    Chill time: 30mins to over night

    I have no idea where I got this recipe … I think it was on Eagle brand milk one day? I’ve been using it since I was 14 or 15 – never a complainer!

  16. Keia P
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:19 am · Link

    Crock Pot Mac and Cheese
    2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
    4 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces
    2.5 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
    3 eggs, beaten
    1/2 cup sour cream
    1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed Cheddar cheese soup
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup whole milk
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    *Cook pasta, drain. Melt butter and cheese in saucepan. combine all ingredients(pasta last) and cook in crock pot on low, 3 hrs. Stir occassionaly. Enjoy!

  17. Tessa
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:22 am · Link

    Hey, everybody! These are great! I will post them to twitter over the day…if they are tweetable. Some look delicious, but I have no idea how I will fit them into 140 characters. 🙂 But the longer ones are fun to share here on the blog, too.

    It’s that morning rush here in the Dare house – hundred things to do. Even on release day, lunches must be made. 🙂 I’ll be back later…

  18. Kim
    · May 25th, 2010 at 6:39 am · Link

    Quick Chicken Veggy Recipe: Saute raw chicken chunks in a greased pan. Add large package of frozen mixed oriental vegetables, salt and pepper and soy sauce to taste. Cover and saute until vegetables are tender. Serve over bed of cooked rice.

  19. Linnea
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:26 am · Link

    In Crockpot
    3-4 lbs lean pork
    2 lbs pinto beans soaked
    4 oz can green chilies
    clove garlic minced
    2 Tbs Salt
    1 tsp cumin & oregeno
    Cover w/ water & cook on low
    serve w? Fritos w/ taco salad fixn’s

  20. Linnea
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:31 am · Link

    A little of the Chalupa goes a long way and you can freeze the leftovers! A lot of time I put this on int he morning and it’s ready for dinner when we all get home, or I cook it overnight for an early lunch. I serve with lettuce, tomato, onions, cheese, avacado, salsa, and sour cream. You can use regular corn chips but it tastes so much better with Fritos! We crush them on the plate before we add everything else to make it easier to eat. Once dish meals are awesome!

    Good luck with Feeding America. I too donate to them based on the few dollars I generate online. It’s a noble purpose, feeding those in need.

    And errr, make that “oregano”

  21. Lori
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:32 am · Link

    recipe tweeted 🙂 How wonderful of you to donate, too!

    Congrats on release day!

  22. Emily Sorokes
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:40 am · Link

    MArgherita Pizza: use premade pizza crust (or frozen), spread with tomato sauce & top with mozzarella. Bake ~15 min (until crust is crispy) @400 . Spread basil leaves and serve.

  23. Jennifer L
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:47 am · Link

    Cucumber Salad
    4 cucumbers, thinly sliced
    1 small white onion, thinly sliced
    1 cup white vinegar
    1/2 cup water
    3/4 cup white sugar
    1 tablespoon dried dill, or to taste

    Toss cucumbers and onion together in a large bowl. Combine vinegar, water and sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, and pour over the cucumber and onions. Stir in dill, cover, and refrigerate until cold.

  24. Sharla Long
    · May 25th, 2010 at 7:53 am · Link

    I #recitweet-ed!

    Cowboy Stew

    1 lb stew meat
    3 cubed potates
    1 chopped onion
    1 can baked bean
    layer as listed in crock pot
    Cook on low 8 hours.

  25. JOYE
    · May 25th, 2010 at 8:01 am · Link

    Place a round steak in a glass baking dish. Pour over it 1 can Campbell’s French Onion soup, 1 can Campbell’s Golden Mushroom soup, half can of water. Cover. Bake 1 hour or until tender at 350 degrees. Serve over rice

  26. Tien "Christine"
    · May 25th, 2010 at 9:20 am · Link

    Sautee bellpeppers mushrooms corn black olives italian seasoning salt add cooked italian sausage prego sauce serve over spaghetti #recitweet

  27. Tammy D.
    · May 25th, 2010 at 10:23 am · Link

    Tessa, congratulations on your release day! I know this trilogy is going to be a big hit! Also, I received the bookmarks and they are lovely!

    Not sure I’m clever enough to make a recipe tweetable (I’m just way too wordy!) But I had to add my favorite fast treat. I’m sure the Darelings deserve a treat for release day!

    No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

    2 c sugar
    1/2 c milk
    1/2 c cocoa
    1/2 c butter
    3/4 c peanut butter
    3 cups oatmeal

    Combine sugar, milk, cocoa, butter in saucepan, mix well, bring to a boil for one minute. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth. Add oatmeal and mix well. Drop by spoonfuls on waxed paper lined cookie sheet. Let cool. (But these are scrumptious warm and gooey!)

  28. Carey Baldwin
    · May 25th, 2010 at 10:36 am · Link

    Woo Hoo! So excited to hold a copy of One Dance with a Duke. Congrats and much love.

    Recipe +story. When I was an intern I heard about something my kids might like. Peanut Butter Captain Crunch Chicken. Real recipe is:

    Crush Peanut Butter Flavor Captain Crunch
    Dip chicken in milk
    Roll in crushed cereal
    Bake until done at 350

    I didn’t read the recipe and I didn’t know the peanut butter was a flavor of CC cereal. So I slathered the chicken in REAL peanut butter and rolled the chicken in regular Captain Crunch. It was yummy 😉

  29. Maria del Carmen Enriquez
    · May 25th, 2010 at 11:28 am · Link

    This is a dish when we don’t feel like spending hours over the stove.

    Vigoron (Nicaragua)

    1 bag of frozen yuca (cassava)
    1 bag of shredded cabbage
    2 tomatoes
    1 onion
    1 bag of pork skin
    1 jalapeño

    Put water to boil with 1 teaspoon of salt. When water has boiled add the yuca until it is cooked (not too soft).
    Cut the tomatoes, onion and jalapeño in small pieces; mix them in a bowl with the cabbage. Add vinegar and salt to your taste.

    You put the salad, yucca (without the water) and pork skin in different containers and your guests can serve themselves. The yuca goes first then the pork skin and on top the salad. It is a meal that can be eating with your fingers.

  30. Jane
    · May 25th, 2010 at 11:59 am · Link

    Happy Release Day, Tessa.

    Korean Barbecue Beef
    1 pound beef top sirloin, thinly sliced
    6 cloves garlic, minced
    1/2 pear – peeled, cored, and minced
    2 green onions, thinly sliced
    4 tablespoons soy sauce
    2 tablespoons white sugar
    1 tablespoon sesame oil
    1 tablespoon rice wine
    1 tablespoon sesame seeds
    1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
    freshly ground black pepper to taste
    1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine beef with garlic, pear, green onions, soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, rice wine, sesame seeds, fresh ginger, and ground black pepper. Seal, and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.
    2. Preheat grill pan over high heat. Brush oil over grill pan, and add beef. Cook, turning to brown evenly, for 3 to 6 minutes, or until done.

  31. cories
    · May 25th, 2010 at 12:34 pm · Link

    Happy Release Day!

    This is my favorite soup and it only has three ingredients!

    Corn and Egg Flower soup
    1 can of cream-style corn
    1 can of chicken broth
    1 egg, beaten

    Heat corn and broth in a pot. After it boils, remove from heat. Drizzle in beaten egg while stirring soup. Done!

  32. cories
    · May 25th, 2010 at 12:41 pm · Link

    The great thing about chicken broth is that it can be other cuisines just by changing the spices used.

    American: salt and pepper
    Chinese: garlic and sesame oil
    Thai: lime juice and coconut milk
    Italian: garlic and olive oil (and a bit of Parmesan if I have it)

    You get the idea. I also change the type of noodles used according to which style of soup I’m going for (wheat for American and Italian, mung bean for Chinese and rice for Thai).

  33. cories
    · May 25th, 2010 at 12:45 pm · Link

    By the way, for the Corn and Egg Flower Soup, season to taste (salt and pepper or, if feeling energetic, minced garlic and sesame oil along with the salt and pepper).

  34. Tessa
    · May 25th, 2010 at 12:46 pm · Link

    These are all so fabulous! I’ve been tweeting a few here and there through the day. What I’m loving is that there’s such a diverse range of cuisines represented… Living in Southern California, I’m sure I can get frozen yucca somewhere. But I never would have thought to look for it without Maria’s post!

  35. Khristine
    · May 25th, 2010 at 1:36 pm · Link

    Quick Ribs

    Boil/Simmer slab of pork ribs in equal parts pineapple juice, vinegar and water till tender.
    Brush with Hunts Hickory and Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce. Bake in oven at gas mark 5 for 30 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

  36. Linnea
    · May 25th, 2010 at 1:37 pm · Link

    I found a copy of One Dance at a local B&N and now I have it in my grubby little hands. Actually, it’s on the counter waiting for my to start it later tonight. Congratulations, Tessa!

  37. Molly
    · May 25th, 2010 at 2:48 pm · Link

    Congratulations on your new release!!

  38. Suzy R.
    · May 25th, 2010 at 3:46 pm · Link

    Happy release day… 😉
    Easy Stuffed Mushrooms: (4 ingredients)
    30-40 Mushrooms (stems out)
    1Pkg 8oz cream cheese
    3/4 package bacon (cooked & crumbled)
    3-4 green onions (chopped)
    Mix ingredients, stuff mushroom caps, place on baking sheet, spray or dribble olive oil on each one. Cook 40 min. 350 degrees.

  39. Virginia C
    · May 25th, 2010 at 4:17 pm · Link

    Happy Release Day!

    E-Z Cookies

    In medium bowl, combine one cup chunky peanut butter, one egg and one cup sugar (add extra sugar if needed to make batter stiff). Mix well and add one cup chocolate chips. Drop batter by tablespoon onto parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for about 8 minutes. Do not overbake. Allow cookies to cool slightly on pan before removing.

  40. Yvonne B.
    · May 25th, 2010 at 5:05 pm · Link

    Quick Beef Stroganoff

    1 can cream of mushroom, lb ground beef, 5 sliced mushrooms,½ box pasta or 2 cups rice-saute beef & mushrooms, then add CoM. pasta/rice on side or mixed with beef.

    (Serves 3 w/leftovers – can add or decrease amounts according to needs)

  41. Debra Jones
    · May 26th, 2010 at 2:24 am · Link

    Chocolate Cake In 5 Minutes


    4 Tablespoons cake flour
    4 Tablespoons sugar
    2 Tablespoons cocoa
    1 Egg
    3 Tablespoons milk
    3 Tablespoons oil
    1 Mug


    Mix flour, sugar and cocoa:
    Spoon in 1 egg
    Pour in milk and oil, and mix well
    Put in microwave for 3 minutes on maximum power (1000watt)
    Wait until it stops rising and sets in the mug
    Tip contents out of mug onto saucer and enjoy!

  42. Gincam
    · May 26th, 2010 at 4:38 am · Link

    I hope you “Dance” : )

    “Darn Good Dip”

    1 large tub (16 oz) ready-made Ranch or French Onion dip
    1 (8 oz) pkg shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
    1 (3 oz) pkg or approximately 1/4 cup real bacon bits or pieces

    Combine all ingredients in serving bowl and cover. Store in refrigerator overnight or until well-chilled. Serve with chips, crackers, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, and assorted cut-up fresh veggies like broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, and bell peppers.

  43. Marjorie Donovan
    · May 26th, 2010 at 12:31 pm · Link

    I did tweet on this (Margie1110) but here is a more expanded version of recipe.

    Pour a little bit of enchilada sauce in bottom of crock pot. Layer cut triangles of corn tortillas, covering the bottom. Top with cooked meat (optional) & shredded cheese. Repeat layers until you have @ least 3. End w/ tortillas. Pour remainder of sauce over top & sprinkle w/ shredded cheese. Cook on low until cheese is melted approx 2 hrs or so. Time may vary due to ingredients. I call this “Lazy enchiladas”. LOL

  44. morningstar
    · May 26th, 2010 at 12:40 pm · Link

    Hi Tessa, congratulations on your release! Here’s my entry and it’s a proven kid-pleaser, plus it looks and tastes fancy enough for company! Enjoy ~

    Puffy Cheese Bake: Grease 9×13/Arrange 6 bread-cheese-bread sandwiches/Mix 2 cups milk ¼ cup oil 4 eggs & seasonings, pour/bake@350/45 min

  45. Booklover1335
    · May 26th, 2010 at 1:44 pm · Link

    Happy release day. This is a fam favorite and takes less than 15 mins to reheat, chop, drain the cans and you are ready to eat. Here’s my tweet (it was tough getting it 140 or less)

    Fajita salad: Tyson fajita chix strips, lettuce, 1 ea can corn/black beans, taco cheese, tortilla chips. Heat chop & top w/ favs #recitweet

  46. Lady Indis Dress
    · May 27th, 2010 at 7:36 am · Link

    Here’s my husband’s favorite summer side dish:

    Peel and slice cucumbers. Mix in Miracle Whip to taste. Refrigerate. Serve with anything.

  47. Linnea
    · May 27th, 2010 at 1:20 pm · Link

    I forgot to include how to “de-gas” pinto beans.

    Sort and rinse. Place in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and drain and rinse beans. Return bean to pot and soak at least 1 hour. before cooking, drain and rinse again. The beans are now ready for whatever recipe you are planning. Works like a charm, I swear.

  48. Antonia Girmacea
    · May 28th, 2010 at 12:37 am · Link

    I’m so late 😳

    But, congratulations on your release! :mrgreen: