Q&A with Peg Cochran
1) Allergic to Death is the first in the
Gourmet De-Lite Mystery series. What are some of your
favorite de-lite-ful snacks and what are some of your guilty
Oooh, guilty pleasures. I love the sound of that! I adore
dark chocolate—especially chili chocolate and the bars
with sea salt. Other than that, I’m more of a savory
girl. Don’t put a bowl of nuts or chips in front of
me unless you want me to perform a disappearing act for you!
And the buttered popcorn at the movies—love it
although it never tastes as good as it smells. When it
comes to healthy...I keep almonds in my purse for snacking,
and I love raw veggies with hummus and fresh fruit.
2) Who are your favorite authors? What do you like
to read in your spare time?
I’m a complete mystery fan although occasionally
I’ll take a foray into women’s fiction. I love
reading about England so many of my favorite writers are
English or set their stories in England—P.D. James,
Peter Robinson, Deborah Crombie, Colin Dexter, Cynthia
Harrod-Eagles. For a good laugh, I adore Janet
Evanovich—humor is so very hard to do well! And every
Christmas I have to reread A Christmas Carol—the
language is so beautiful! I’ve passed that tradition
on to my daughter—it was the first book she downloaded
to the e-reader she got for Christmas. As for non-fiction,
I’m a sucker for self-help books and I can sit for
hours savoring cookbooks.
3) How do you create Gigi’s fabulous (and
healthy!) gourmet recipes? Do you test them at home for your
I usually start by “deconstructing” something
we like but that’s loaded with
calories—shepherd’s pie for instance. Instead
of ground beef, I make it with ground turkey and low fat
gravy. And shhh, don’t tell my husband, but I never
put butter in the mashed potatoes except at Thanksgiving!
If you make them with low fat milk, they’re not nearly
as sinful but still delicious. So far I haven’t had
any complaints about the lower calorie substitutions. If my
hubby is feeling deprived, he just goes off to a corner with
a container of ice cream and a spoon!
4) What’s in store next for Gigi and Reg?
Well! Gigi takes on a high profile client—soap star
Felicity Davenport whose country house is in Woodstone.
When Felicity is found dead, suspicion falls on Sienna,
Gigi’s best friend, who happens to be pregnant with
her first baby. Gigi doesn’t want Sienna delivering
in jail, so she sets out to solve the case herself with help
from Reg, her trusty sidekick. Oh, and Gigi’s love
life is shaken up by the arrival in town of Declan McQuaid,
owner of Declan’s Grille. He’s Irish, charming
and handsome. And he makes Gigi very nervous!
5) Where and when do you like to do your writing?
Most days I stay at my desk during lunch (I have a day
job—marketing communications) and immerse myself in my
fictional world for an hour while I eat. (I’m afraid
this often results in half my lunch ending up in my lap!).
I love having a laptop because it means I can work anywhere.
I’ll usually take it into the kitchen with me so I
can work while dinner is cooking. So far there
haven’t been too many culinary disasters because I was
distracted by my story. If I’m going to work for a
long stretch of time, I’m fortunate enough to have a
dedicated home office. And sometimes for something
different I’ll take my laptop to the
library—they have wonderfully comfy chairs and laptop
tables, and I love being surrounded by so many books while
I’m writing—great for inspiration.