Murder in the Afternoon
Murder, She Wrote - S2:E3
Jessica seems entirely at home on the set of a TV soap opera, although one of the slightly snooty veteran actors appearing in the show prefers the phrase, "daytime drama".
J.B.'s niece has a part on Our Secret Lives and is worried about her character being written out.
Producer Joyce Halloran (played by the majestic Jessica Walter) has created a culture of fear. She's known as the dragon lady, and she breathes fire, slashing and burning left, right and centre.
She's killing off characters, which boosts the ratings but rattles the cast. A romantic lead who wants to be released from his contract says, "I just wish I were on her death list, or she was."
When Joyce is murdered, J.B.'s niece is the prime suspect and goes on the run. But many others have good reason to want Joyce out of the picture.
Jessica will have to put her thinking cap on to work out whodunit in this one, especially as the murderer was disguised head to toe in black as "The Avenger", a character in the show who could be a man, or a woman, of any age. Tricky!
Paul Burke plays an actor in the soap; he's a big fan of Jessica's work. He tells her that he's read all of her books, which helps him get into character as he plays a cop. Sometimes actors who play a role in a long-running show tend to merge fiction with reality. This is undoubtedly the case with a few folks who appear in Our Secret Lives!
Paul Burke - Twelve O'Clock High Creole Rice
3 cups tomato juice
3 cups chicken broth
¼ cup olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 teaspoon minced garlic (don’t be afraid)
1 medium green pepper, diced
1 large tomato, diced
1 tablespoon capers
8 oz chopped black olives
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
½ stick butter
2 cups uncooked rice
A few drops of hot sauce
Heat the tomato juice and broth and set aside. In a frying pan, add the olive oil and sauté the onion until wilted. Add the garlic and green pepper and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the tomato, capers, olives, parsley, salt and pepper to taste, and sauté for 2-3 minutes and set aside.
In a deep frying pan, melt the butter and then add the rice and toss. Sauté until golden. (Be careful not to burn the butter or the rice.) Add the vegetable mixture and blend. Pour in 3 cups of the liquid and a few drops of the hot sauce to your liking, and stir. Cover and simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed. Continue to add liquid 1 cup at a time until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is almost done. Turn off the heat. Cover and allow to sit for five minutes. Fluff with a fork and serve.
Next time on Murder, She Cooked a recipe from the kitchen of Polly Bergen.
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