Meet Monique McDonell

About the author – Monique McDonell

I am an Australian author who writes contemporary women's fiction, including chick lit and romance. When I began to write again, I noticed a trend - writing dark unhappy stories made me unhappy. So I made a decision to write a novel with a happy ending and I have been writing happy stories ever since.

I am the author of five standalone novels, including Mr. Right and Other Mongrels and Hearts Afire and the Upper Crust Series. Many of my novels focus on Australian characters meeting and visiting US

characters.

I have been a member of the writing group The Writer’s Dozen for ten years. Our anthology Better Than Chocolate raised over $10,000 for the charity Room to Read and helped build a library in South East Asia. I am also a member of the Romance Writers of Australia. In 2015, I had a piece on writing chick lit featured in the successful Australian non-fiction book Copyfight.

To learn more about my books, my writing, my caffeine obsession and my upcoming books please visit:

www.moniquemcdonell.com.au

Or one of my social pages

Facebook

Twitter

Blog

Goodreads

Baked Guinness Ham

My Christmas recipe is, Baked Guinness Ham. I hope you like it!

Ingredients

  • 1 leg ham, about 5-6kg

  • 750ml Guinness Extra Stout

  • Whole cloves (optional)

Glaze

  • 1 cup (220g) sugar

  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard

  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamom

  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger

Instructions:Preheat oven to 160°C (140°C fan). Cut skin around thick end of knuckle without cutting into fat and flesh. Ease skin from fat by slipping thumb of one hand under the skin and firmly sliding it back and forth. Turn ham over and ease away remaining skin, which should come off in one piece. Place ham, fat-side up, in a roasting pan with stout, reserving 2-3 tablespoons for glaze. Cover with foil, making it as airtight as possible, and bake for 1½hrs. Baste ham with juices several times during cooking. Meanwhile, make glaze. In a bowl, combine sugar, mustard, spices and enough reserved stout to make a thick paste. Stir well. Remove from oven and pour liquid into a saucepan. Using a sharp knife, score fat with diagonal cuts at 4cm intervals, first one way, then opposite way, to form a diamond pattern. Spread half glaze mixture over ham and stud a clove in the corner of each diamond. Increase oven temperature to 200°C (180°C fan) and bake a further 30-40mins, basting every 10mins with remaining glaze. If serving hot, leave ham to rest in turned-off oven for 30mins. If serving cold, allow to cool and store in fridge overnight. Serve on a stand or large platter garnished with watercress or parsley.

Merry Christmas and don't forget to grab a copy of my newest story in the recent release of a brand new Christmas Anthology called, It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Chick Lit.

Get your free copy here: https://www.amazon.com/Its-Beginning-Look-Like-Chick-ebook/dp/B01MD197DJ

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