Tonight’s special—a giveaway!

So, last week I got my contributors’ copies of The Dirty Diner, a collection of, shall we say, naughty stories revolving around restaurants and other eating establishments. My story, “The Key Ingredient,” is about a pastry chef wallowing in heartache by making bread pudding. Add a little magic, and strange things start happening to the people who eat it.

True confession time: I’ve never actually made bread pudding.

Oh, it’s probably not that hard, but the idea of knowing how to make this delectable (and high-calorie) sweet treat in the comfort of my own home is a recipe for plus-size pants and heartache of a different kind (that is to say, heart failure). Whenever we go out to eat, though, if bread pudding’s on the menu then it’s more than likely that I’ll order it. My favorite bread pudding is the caramel brioche pudding at Cyrano’s, a restaurant in Webster Groves, where they serve it with a cherry bourbon sauce. Not quite a bread pudding but in the same family is the sticky toffee pudding which they serve at the Schlafly Tap Room as well as the Schlafly Bottleworks. When we took my parents there, even the four of us couldn’t finish the serving. It’s a dense, dark cake in a caramel sauce with a mountain of clotted cream holding it down.

They’re both phenomenal. I won’t say they’re better than sex because, honestly, if you think something you eat is better than sex, you’re doing the sex wrong. However, I think they’re best enjoyed as a sometimes food, not one you have on a daily basis.

So! I have two copies of The Dirty Diner courtesy of my editor, the lovely Jerry Wheeler, and I want to give away one of them. Here’s the deal: between now and July 30, go to Goodreads and enter to win. (Not a Goodreads member? Join—it’s free—and add me as a friend as well.) The winner will be chosen at random.

Don’t wait, enter today! Operators are standing by—well, you know what I mean.