Friday, October 6, 2017

Cozy Food Friday

That means it's time to share a recipe from 
another great cozy mystery!

Today I'm featuring 
Book 3 in the Brewing Trouble Mysteries
by Joyce Tremel

Disaster is on tap in this all-new mystery from the author of Tangled Up in Brew.

It's Oktoberfest in Pittsburgh, and brewpub owner Maxine "Max" O'Hara is prepping for a busy month at the Allegheny Brew House. To create the perfect atmosphere for the boozy celebration, Max hires an oompah band. But when one of the members from the band turns up dead, it's up to Max to solve the murder before the festivities are ruined. 

Adding to the brewing trouble, Candy, Max's friend, is acting suspicious... Secrets from her past are fermenting under the surface, and Max must uncover the truth to prove her friend's innocence. To make matters worse, Jake's snooty ex-fiancΓ©e shows up in town for an art gallery opening, and she'll be nothing but a barrel of trouble for Max.


Joyce Tremel was a police secretary for ten years and more than once envisioned the demise of certain co-workers, but settled on writing as a way to keep herself out of jail. She is a native Pittsburgher and lives in a suburb of the city with her husband.

Her debut mystery, To Brew Or Not To Brew was nominated for the 2015 Reviewers' Choice award for Best Amateur Sleuth by RT Book Reviews. The second book in the series, Tangled Up In Brew was released in October 2016 and chosen as a "Top Pick" by RT Book Reviews. It was the winner of the 2016 Reviewers' Choice Award for Best Amateur Sleuth. It was also named one of the Best Books of 2016 by Kings River Life Magazine. The third book in the series, A Room With a Brew, released October 3, 2017.


I’ve been tipsy with anticipation waiting for the release of this third installment of the Brewing Trouble Mysteries.

After I stayed up all night reading A ROOM WITH A BREW, I woke with a severe readers’ hangover. It was worth every minute of it! Author Tremel focused this third book in her series around Oktoberfest. Protagonist Maxine “Max” O’Hara expects to be busy in her brew pub, and she is, but she didn’t expect to be busy in a murder investigation. But it would be out of character for Max not to search out the why, and who in this cleverly written whodunit.

A ROOM WITH A BREW was an exciting mystery filled with more twists and turns than there are bubbles in the suds of a head of beer. Author Joyce Tremel kept the mystery going, and had me guessing all through the book. Just when I was feeling proud of myself thinking I had figured it out, sobered me up with a reveal I didn’t see coming!

A fantastic mystery, fun and interesting characters, quick and yummy recipes, plus the added bonus of getting an education in beer, A ROOM WITH A BREW has everything you could want from a cozy mystery.

Don’t brew on it for long. Hops yourself out and pick up a copy of your own. You’ll be drunk with happiness that you did.


On to the recipe!

All food photos are borrowed from Google Images and its contributors, with many thanks. 
Your finished dish will vary in appearance.


Bottom Layer

2 cups crushed pretzels
¾ cup melted butter
3 Tbsp. sugar

   Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
   Mix all ingredients, and press into a 9-by-13 inch pan.
   Bake for 8 minutes.

Filling (Middle Layer)

8 oz. softened cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1 8-0z. container whipped topping 

   Beat cream cheese and sugar until creamy.
   Fold in whipped topping.
   Spread over cooled pretzel mixture. 
   Chill for 30 minutes or until Jell-O for the top layer is thickened.

Lisa's note: I know it isn't exactly strawberry season, and fresh is always best, 
but I think frozen strawberries would work just fine for this dish. 

Top Layer

2 3-oz. boxes strawberry Jell-O
2 cups boiling water
2 cups sliced strawberries

   Combine Jell-O with boiling water. 
   Stir until dissolved, about 2 minutes.
   Add strawberries.
   Chill until partially thickened, then spread over the top of cream cheese mixture. 
   Refrigerate overnight or until firm.

   If desired, top with additional whipped topping and sprinkle with crushed or broken pretzel pieces.

I've never tasted pretzel salad. However, my sister's best friend makes this for every get together she goes to. She said it's always requested that she brings it to gatherings.


Please keep reading and check out my 
installments of 
Book Beginnings on Fridays
The Friday 56

Both the BB and 56 are also from


Book Beginnings on Fridays is a meme hosted by Rose City Reader
Share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading

The Friday 56 is a meme hosted by Freda's Voice
Rules: *Grab a book, any book. *Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader (If you have to improvise, that's okay.) *Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grab you. *Post it.

My Book Beginnings

I slid onto a piano stool as Daisy Hart placed the fall centerpiece she'd designed on the distressed wood counter in her flower shop, Beautiful Blooms.

"That looks great," I said. "It's exactly what I had in mind." 

"When you said something for Oktoberfest," Daisy said, "I wasn't sure whether to go with autumn, beer, or Germany, so I looked it up and incorporated all of them."

"Well, it's perfect." 

My 56

We'd called a somewhat uneasy truce since then.

Dad stood too. "Don't worry, sweetie. It will all work out."

"I hope you're right."

As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

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  1. Thanks for sharing the recipe! It's one of my new favorites. And thanks for the great review!

  2. Oh my the recipe looks so yummy. I'm looking forward to reading A Room with a Brew.

  3. Thanks for sharing your review and recipe.

  4. A wonderful review of A Room with a Brew (It would be my husband's favorite room.) and scrumptious recipe! Yum!

    Have a great weekend, Lisa and thank you for all that you do. :)

  5. A book that sounds tempting...and yummy food, too. Thanks for sharing...and here's mine: “EXPOSED”

  6. This sounds like a good book. I like pretzel salad too. I need to figure out how to make half a recipe. It is too easy to overindulge with a full one. I am featuring Death Overdue by Allison Brook this week. Happy reading!

  7. My sil has been making this for a long time and it's sooo good. She brings it to every family get together.

  8. This is the second time I've seen Room With a Brew today. It sounds like an interesting story. Also, that recipe looks fantastic.

  9. I've never heard of pretzel salad. It would make a great dish for a pot luck dinner. Cute title and cover, too.

  10. This book sounds so good! That pretzel salad looks super yummy! :)

  11. How funny that we used the same book today. I so love this series. It's wonderful and so is this book. Have a great weekend!

  12. I love pretzel salad, though I really don't think it should be called a salad, more like a dessert. The book looks fun and I laughed to read that you had a book hangover. I haven't done that for years. I can't read through the night anymore. My quotes from Hamilton REvolutionary

  13. That dessert looks so decadent and delicious!!! Happy weekend!

  14. Can't say I've ever heard of that dish before but it sure sounds good! :)

    Lauren @ Always Me