My Books

Sea-Devil: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 1
Sea-Devil: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 1

You never get over your first about your first murder? When a man is murdered in her bookstore the night before her grand opening, island newcomer, Delilah Duffy, makes a name for herself as prime suspect. If Delilah Duffy hopes to create a life on the island, she must navigate through a vicious family feud, shoddy police work and the mistakes of her past. Will Delilah uncover the truth before her past and her present destroy her?

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Luna-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 2
Luna-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 2

We're all just one pain away from lunacy. A seaside inn. An elegant party. A black dress. What could go wrong? For Delilah Duffy, just about anything. With her bookstore failing, the last thing she needs is a party or another mystery to solve. With nightmares, anxiety, and panic intensifying, Delilah doesn’t know what’s real and what’s in her head. With everything at risk, Delilah discovers what’s worse… becoming a lunatic or facing one.

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Sea-Crossed: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 3
Sea-Crossed: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 3

Some secrets are kept to be kind. Torture, pain, misery - that’s all someone else wants for her. When a dinner party turns deadly, Sam goes missing, and Delilah realizes she's being watched, the “book queen with a thing for crime scenes” must battle to get her life and love back. Can love and determination save them or will dark secrets ruin her chances for a normal life? With mysterious messages taunting her and a killer eluding her, what lines will she cross to get to the truth?

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Pyra-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 4
Pyra-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 4

Everything can change in seconds. Bookstore manager and crime-solver, Delilah Duffy knows that better than anyone. When her Happily Ever After Valentine’s Day Bash ends in fiery destruction, everything she’s worked for burns with it. Pregnant and brokenhearted, Delilah fans the flames of her anger toward what she’s good at: solving crimes. Hot on the trail of an arsonist while her nemesis is on hers, Delilah fights to get her life back. Will she turn ash to treasure before the pyromaniac strikes

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My Vella Story

Water World
Water World

After a tough move with his Mom and sister from his beloved country home, Ethan isn't adjusting well to city life. In trying to escape his problems in this world, he opens another, dropping him and his sister, Abby, into Water World. This trip is no vacation, not with legendary monsters and deadly sea creatures to battle. But teaming up to help the merpeople through their home-related crisis might help Ethan and Abby navigate theirs, if they survive long enough to make it home.

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  • Jessica Sherry

How to Spatchcock (the hell out of) a Chicken

I probably never, ever in a million years would’ve tried spatchcocking a chicken if not for the pandemic and occasional shortages* of preferred meats in my Sam’s and Costco. For a time, whole chickens were all we could get.

Funny chipmunk

*I’m skeptical there ever really was a shortage or if people just squirreled away meats like animals preparing for winter. I see your chubby, nut-filled cheeks, you hoarders.

Anyway, there’s something very… um, unsettling about the word spatchcocking. Sounds like… well, I don’t want to think about what it sounds like. Some kind of medieval torture device or very kinky sex game? Yikes.

Even so, after getting over my first-time jitters and getting down to it, I’ve found it to be a great way to cook a whole chicken with benefits:

  • Whole chickens are cheaper per pound.

  • Spatchcocking provides a more-even bake, so the breast meat doesn’t get (as) dry.

  • I can use the backbone and the rest of the chicken bones when we’re done with them for making homemade chicken stock. There’s an awesome satisfaction in using and reusing the whole bird.

  • I can throw some veggies on the pan with the chicken and have a one-sheet meal. Easy peasy.

  • And… once you’ve mastered this skill, you’ll feel like a culinary badass. At least, I did... but my standards are probably kinda low. *Shrug*

Now, let's get spatchcocking. *Wink*

What You Need:

  • 1 Whole Chicken… Duh. And, thawed, so you don’t break your fingers, silly billy.

  • A cutting tool… I use kitchen shears, but I’ve seen people use sharp knives.

  • Paper towels

  • Non-porous cutting board… so your board doesn’t soak up juicy chicken germs to spring on you later.

  • A baking sheet

  • An I-got-this attitude

What You Do:

  1. Remove chicken from packaging. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels.

  2. Set on cutting board, breast-side down. If you’re unsure, the breast side is more rounded while the backside is flatter.

  3. Cut along both sides of the backbone. To find the sweet spots for cutting, use the fleshy clump of skin at the neck or tail as a guide and cut along both sides of it. Get friendly with your bird; it's a good bird and it's fine, no one's watching. Since I have very cheap kitchen tools, this requires some muscle to cut through the small bones. But, once you get your groove, it’s not so bad. Here's an excellent video if you need a visual, and it's how I learned, though I don't use the skewers.

  4. If you’re interested in trying to make your own stock, save the backbone. I put mine in a plastic bag and tuck it in the freezer along with my chicken carcass. Don’t want to do that? Rocking the stock isn't for everyone. I get it. Toss it (but maybe tie it in a plastic grocery bag so your trash doesn’t stink tomorrow).

  5. Turn your chicken over to the breast side. Press your palm into the breast until you hear the bone crack. Pop goes the, um, chicken.

  6. Lay your chicken, breast-side up, on your baking sheet. Tuck the wings under the body of the chicken, so they won’t get too crispy.

  7. Do a celebratory chicken dance! You just spatchcocked (the hell out of) a chicken.

Spatchcocked chicken

Now, what to do next…

  1. Preheat your oven to 450 F.

  2. Season your bird. For this, you can use any fat + seasonings combination. I like to keep my chicken fairly neutral because I always think I’ll have leftovers to use for chicken salad or chicken soup… Truth is, it's a fool's dream. I rarely have leftovers. Anyway, I use softened butter, minced garlic, rosemary, salt, pepper, and lemon zest to rub under and over the skin. I reserve some of this concoction for basting halfway through. A drizzle of olive oil and a blend of whatever seasonings you’re feeling at the moment would work, too. Get creative, people. It's chicken! You can also stuff the cavity with onion, rosemary, garlic, lemon, or whatever you have on hand for extra flav. The last time I spatchcocked a chicken, I was feeling a little lazy, so I simply drizzles the bird with olive oil and sprinkled it with Mesquite seasoning, which turned out yummy, too.

  3. Bake at 450 F for ten to twelve minutes. Take the pan out of the oven if you wish to add hard veggies like carrots or potatoes. For softer veggies, like broccoli, don’t add until you baste. I season my veg with olive oil, salt, pepper, and maybe a little garlic and herb. Pour your cut-up veggies onto the hot pan. They’ll sizzle a bit, which is super-satisfying to hear. Return the pan to the oven, but turn the temperature down to 400 F.

  4. Bake fifteen minutes. Baste, if you're into it. Add soft veggies.

  5. Bake another twenty to twenty-five minutes or until the thickest part of the breast is over 165 degrees F.

  6. Let your chicken-baby rest ten minutes. Serve it like a boss.

My mind wanders... I bet you can do this to a turkey, too. I haven't tried it. Yet. If you have, let the rest of us kitchen experimenters know how it turned out. Also, if you've done other clever tricks to make chicken dinner more exciting, share below.