Kelly Jensen on Soy, Soy Recipes and her new release ‘To See The Sun by Kelly Jensen (guest post and giveaway)

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To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen 

Riptide Publishing
Cover Art by Garrett Leigh

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing  | Amazon

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Kelly Jensen here today talking about farming, soy, and recipes. Welcome, Kelly!

Soy, Soy, and a Little More Soy by Kelly Jensen

Did you know that soybeans are the second most planted field crop in the U.S.? You do now. The only thing we grow more of in North America is corn.

There’s not a lot that will grow in the harsh environment of Alkirak. Bram has a little patch of corn on his farm, but mostly, he grows soybeans, and my ever-practical farmer processes his soy in a number of ways: milk, tempeh, miso, tofu, soy sauce, and soy nuts. He can also simply enjoy the little green beans steamed in the pod and served with salt. In the book, I have him experimenting with soy flour. I mean, who wants to live at the end of the galaxy without pancakes? He also wonders when someone is going to invent a coffee-type drink made of soy. (Hopefully never.)

I enjoyed researching what Bram and Gael might grow and might cook on the farm, because I’m interested in food, and I like to cook. I’m also a fan of soy products. I love eating the steamed fresh beans, I’ve been drinking soy milk for twenty-five years ago, and some of my favorite dishes feature tasty cubes of tofu. So I thought I’d share a couple of favorite recipes, with notes about how Gael would have adapted them to locally available produce!

Hot and Sour Soup

This is hands down my favorite soup. I love the combination of heat and spice, and the competing textures of the mushrooms, tofu, and bean shoots. At home, I’ll have bottles of soy sauce and vinegar on hand to doctor takeout versions, but it’s really easy to make yourself!

Gael would have most of these ingredients on hand, though he’d have to rehydrate mushrooms and onions. I’m not sure about the bamboo shoots, but thinly sliced celery would be an acceptable substitute! As for the sambal, let’s just assume that’s a galaxy-wide condiment, as it should be.

What you’ll need:

8 cups of stock (chicken or vegetable)
2-3 cups of sliced mushrooms (shitake or baby bellas)
¼ cup rice vinegar (more to taste)
¼ cup soy sauce
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp sambal oelek (chili garlic sauce)
¼ cup cornstarch
2 eggs (whisked)
8 oz firm tofu (cubed)
¼ cup green onions (sliced thin)
1 tsp sesame oil
white pepper

What to do:

Reserve ¼ of the stock for later, and add the remaining stock, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, and sambal oelek to a large stock pot. Heat over medium-high heat until simmering, stirring occasionally.

Whisk the other ¼ cup of stock and cornstarch together in a small bowl until completely smooth.  Once the soup has reached a simmer, stir in the cornstarch mixture and stir for 1 minute or so until the soup has thickened.

Then keep stirring the soup in a circular motion as you drizzle in the eggs. The eggs should create slim streamers as you stir. Add the tofu, about half of the green onions, and sesame oil.  Then season the soup white pepper to taste.  This is when I might add more vinegar. If you like it hot, add more sambal! 

Garnish with extra onions. Makes about 6 servings.

Soy Peanut Noodles

This is another textural favorite—the crunch of the peanuts next to the soft noodles and small cubes of tofu. Combined with the sauce, nuts, and noodles, you can include any vegetables you want, experimenting with flavors and textures.

Gael would have most of these ingredients on hand, but could substitute soy nuts for the peanuts. I don’t think you can make a good peanut butter out of soy nuts, though, so I’m going to propose peanut butter as a galactic condiment along with the sambal.

What you’ll need:

Sauce
1 inch piece of ginger (peeled)
1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky, your choice)
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp light brown sugar (packed)
½ tsp sambal oelek

Noodles
1 package of noodles
1 package of firm tofu
½ cup peanuts
bean sprouts, match stick carrots, finely sliced celery, green onions.

What to do:

Sauce
In a food processor, pulse the ginger until it’s mashed, then add everything else plus 1/3 cup of water and blend until smooth. If you want the sauce thinner, add more water. Sauce be kept in the fridge for a few days.

Noodles
Whatever is your favorite. You can use udon, rice stick, ramen, or even spaghetti. Just get something noodle-y. Cook according to package directions, making sure to leave them just a bit underdone. They’ll soften in the next step.

Tofu
Dry it (let it sit out on some paper towel and pat it down), dredge in flour, a little salt and pepper, and shallow fry in hot oil until very lightly golden. Set aside to drain.

Vegetables
Except for the beansprouts (if using), steam until tender crisp.

Set a large pan (or wok) over medium heat, spoon in your sauce and top with noodles and vegetables. Reduce the heat and stir until warmed through and combined. A minute or two. Serve topped with peanuts and fried tofu cubes.

I hope I’ve inspired you to try cooking with soy, tofu in particular. Both of these recipes might be a little on the spicy side, but if you are interested in cooking with tofu, the second one can definitely be made without adding the chili (sambal). Also, the above method for preparing tofu can be used for a ton of dishes. The fried cubes are even tasty on their own.

 

 

About To See the Sun

Survival is hard enough in the outer colonies—what chance does love have?

Life can be harsh and lonely in the outer colonies, but miner-turned-farmer Abraham Bauer is living his dream, cultivating crops that will one day turn the unforgiving world of Alkirak into paradise. He wants more, though. A companion—someone quiet like him. Someone to share his days, his bed, and his heart.

Gael Sonnen has never seen the sky, let alone the sun. He’s spent his whole life locked in the undercity beneath Zhemosen, running from one desperate situation to another. For a chance to get out, he’ll do just about anything—even travel to the far end of the galaxy as a mail-order husband. But no plan of Gael’s has ever gone smoothly, and his new start on Alkirak is no exception. Things go wrong from the moment he steps off the shuttle.

Although Gael arrives with unexpected complications, Abraham is prepared to make their relationship work—until Gael’s past catches up with them, threatening Abraham’s livelihood, the freedom Gael gave everything for, and the love neither man ever hoped to find.

 

About Kelly Jensen

If aliens ever do land on Earth, Kelly will not be prepared, despite having read over a hundred stories about the apocalypse. Still, she will pack her precious books into a box and carry them with her as she strives to survive. It’s what bibliophiles do.

Kelly is the author of a number of novels, novellas, and short stories, including the Chaos Station series, cowritten with Jenn Burke. Some of what she writes is speculative in nature, but mostly it’s just about a guy losing his socks and/or burning dinner. Because life isn’t all conquering aliens and mountain peaks. Sometimes finding a happy ever after is all the adventure we need.

Connect with Kelly:

Giveaway

To celebrate the release of To See the Sun, Kelly is giving away a $25 Riptide credit and some swag stickers and a bracelet! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on August 18, 2018. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following along, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

 

Release Day Blitz for To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen (excerpt and giveaway)

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To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Release Date: August 13, 2018

Length: Print – 243 pages. Ebook – 295 pages.

Subgenre: Science fiction, western

Reader warnings: past and present violence, and references to past abuse.

For a full list of tags, visit: https://riptidepublishing.com/titles/to-see-the-sun and click on “Additional Details”

Links:

Riptide Publishing: https://riptidepublishing.com/titles/to-see-the-sun

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/829052

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/to-see-the-sun-kelly-jensen/1128691285?ean=2940162126768

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/to-see-the-sun

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/to-see-the-sun/id1383776817?mt=11

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/See-Sun-Kelly-Jensen/dp/162649830X/

Book synopsis:

Survival is hard enough in the outer colonies—what chance does love have?

Life can be harsh and lonely in the outer colonies, but miner-turned-farmer Abraham Bauer is living his dream, cultivating crops that will one day turn the unforgiving world of Alkirak into paradise. He wants more, though. A companion—someone quiet like him. Someone to share his days, his bed, and his heart.

Gael Sonnen has never seen the sky, let alone the sun. He’s spent his whole life locked in the undercity beneath Zhemosen, running from one desperate situation to another. For a chance to get out, he’ll do just about anything—even travel to the far end of the galaxy as a mail-order husband. But no plan of Gael’s has ever gone smoothly, and his new start on Alkirak is no exception. Things go wrong from the moment he steps off the shuttle.

Although Gael arrives with unexpected complications, Abraham is prepared to make their relationship work—until Gael’s past catches up with them, threatening Abraham’s livelihood, the freedom Gael gave everything for, and the love neither man ever hoped to find.

Excerpt:

Bram pushed up from the table. “I’m going to make tea. Want some?”

“I can make it.”

“Sit. I didn’t ship you all the way out here to wait on me.”

“What did you ship me out here for?”

Bram didn’t answer, and the question burned the back of his neck as he performed the mundane task of making the tea. He selected an herbal blend, his favorite, and spooned desiccated leaves, fruit peel, and flower heads into the diffusing chamber at the center of a battered metal pot. He could program the beverage machine, but he preferred to make tea the old-fashioned way. Leaves and hot water. Sometimes the process of a thing was as important as the result.

He reached toward the shelf of mugs and stopped as a hand touched his shoulder. Warm breath ghosted across the cooling skin at the back of his neck, reigniting his blush. Bram let his fingers catch on the edge of the shelf and rest there, and tipped his head forward. Gael moved closer, the heat of his body evident now as he leaned in.

Lips met the back of his neck in a soft kiss. A small quake shifted the muscles beneath Bram’s skin, his body making ready to turn. He held still a moment longer before following another long-held urge, turning slowly—so slowly—until they were face to face. Well, until his mouth was level with Gael’s forehead. Bram pressed a kiss there, one as gentle as the touch of lips to the back of his neck.

“I didn’t bring you out here for this, either,” he murmured.

“Yes, you did.”

Bram took hold of Gael’s slim shoulders. “Not just this.” And not like this.

In answer, Gael lifted his face, offering up his mouth. Bram’s resolve lasted about a second longer than he thought it might before he bent to taste those lips. They’d been interrupted twice now. No longer.

Gael’s lips were so soft, melting beneath his, opening—though Bram didn’t take the invitation right away. He kissed both lips, together and separately. He tasted them, the scent of Gael mingling with the bitter tang of the outside air. Gael made a small sound: a whimper or a moan. Bram deepened the kiss, still resisting the temptation of Gael’s tongue. He didn’t want to fall all in, lose himself.

Then he was there, falling, his lips and hands operating independently of thought. He craved the warmth of Gael’s skin and wanted to compare it to the feel of his tongue. See if he moved the same way—gently, teasingly. Gael seemed as wrapped up in the kiss as Bram. He shifted, constantly, swaying into Bram, hooking his hands into the back pockets of Bram’s work pants.

Blood shot south to pulse in his cock, leaving Bram in that almost-forgotten state of arousal—somewhere between thought and thoughtlessness. He teetered there, reveling in the anticipation, and let his imagination roam. Oh, to touch Gael’s skin, to taste him. To hear the sounds he’d make when aroused, when brought to climax, when drifting in the aftermath. Would he be loud? Would he be shy and sweet?

A soft click sounded behind him. The tea. Blinking as though roused from a dream, Bram pulled back. Gael leaned in immediately, following him. He kissed Bram’s neck and ground his hips forward. Bram tugged Gael’s hands from his pockets, regret making his movements clumsy.

Gael tipped his head back. “What are you doing?”

“The tea is ready.”

One long, slow blink. “What?”

“The tea.” Bram was still holding Gael’s hands, and stupidly, he didn’t want to let go. But he did so he could turn and collect the mugs. Pick up the pot.

“Did I do something wrong?”

“No.”

“Then why did we stop?”

Bram had to consider his answer because he didn’t really know, not in a way he could express in words. It would have been so easy to keep going. To have had something fast and dirty in the kitchen, or to have picked Gael up and carried him to the bedroom.

Gael followed him into the HV room and sat beside him on the couch. Waited quietly while Bram poured the tea and handed over one of the mugs. Picking up the other mug, Bram thought a little more. Wrapped his fingers around the warm composite of ceramic and plastic and searched for just the right words.

“We’ve got time.” Bram raised the mug to his lips, but decided the tea was still too hot to take a sip. “Doesn’t all have to happen in one night.”

About Kelly Jensen:

If aliens ever do land on Earth, Kelly will not be prepared, despite having read over a hundred stories of the apocalypse. Still, she will pack her precious books into a box and carry them with her as she strives to survive. It’s what bibliophiles do.

Kelly is the author of a number of novels, novellas and short stories, including the Chaos Station series, co-written with Jenn Burke. Some of what she writes is speculative in nature, but mostly it’s just about a guy losing his socks and/or burning dinner. Because life isn’t all conquering aliens and mountain peaks. Sometimes finding a happy ever after is all the adventure we need.

Connect with Kelly: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Author Blog | Author Website | Pinterest | Tumblr | Join the newsletter

 

Giveaway

 

Enter the Giveaway:

Prize: Enter to win any back catalog Chaos Station ebook by Kelly Jensen and Jenn Burke or paperback of Always and Forever: A Chaos Station Collection by Kelly Jensen and Jenn Burke. Open internationally.

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