Hello and welcome to Romance Recipes blog! Today I am launching with a new author and a new recipe! Please join me in welcoming author Katharine Ashe with her latest novel, When a Scot Loves A Lady, and her recipe for A Gentleman’s Secret Banana Bread. Yum!
When a Lady Bakes Bread
I admit it. I’m hopeless when it comes to baking yeast breads. Despite many lessons from patient, loving friends, I’ve never quite gotten the hang of it. But I don’t feel too terrible about it, because neither has Lady Kitty Savege, the heroine of my latest novel, WHEN A SCOT LOVES A LADY. A London lady of supreme sophistication, Kitty has barely ever set foot in a kitchen let alone done anything as shockingly belowstairs as baking bread (for heaven’s sake). Nevertheless one wintry day, trapped by a snowstorm in a tiny country inn, she finds herself up to her elbows in dough, wearing an apron no less.
Why would a lady of refinement stoop to such labor? To escape a man, of course! A man she cannot stop thinking of. And fantasizing about. And—well—throwing herself at.
For the roguish Earl of Blackwood is trapped at the inn too. It’s clear that a barbarically gorgeous Scot and a cool-headed spinster must have nothing whatsoever in common, and Kitty is determined to resist his rustic charms. But after any number of deliriously passionate kisses stolen in dark corridors and beneath staircases, it’s not at all clear if he’s doing the seducing or she is. So Kitty flees to the kitchen, to the one place she’s certain she’ll be safe from delectably virile temptation. No lord of the realm would dare set foot in a kitchen where women are baking bread!
But Leam Blackwood is not a typical lord. He’s a secret agent of the crown and he is well accustomed to hunting down elusive prey. More importantly, he is a Scot. And when a Scot wants a lady, he’ll do just about anything to have her.
~ ~ ~
Kitty and I may not be dab hands (as the Regency beaux say) at baking yeast breads, but I adore whipping up a tasty tea loaf. My favorite is my sister Mary’s banana bread, a deliciously sweet, fluffy and very simple treat that’s perfect with coffee, tea and hot chocolate. One day a few years ago I was craving it, so I called up my sister, and since she wasn’t home I asked her husband if he knew the recipe. He said (with mild indignation and a hint of pride), “I not only know it, I made it up.” And so in my recipe book Mary’s Banana Bread became A Gentleman’s Secret Banana Bread. I hope you enjoy it!
A Gentleman’s Secret Banana Bread
Grease and lightly flour one loaf pan or two tea loaf pans.
Peel and mash to a pulp 2-3 very brown bananas, and set aside.
In an electric mixer, whip up:
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
(Don’t be shy about this whipping. It is essential to give this loaf its light, fluffy texture!)
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup (or less) white sugar
Whip it up again!
1 tsp vanilla
Whip it up again!
1 ½ cup white all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp ground cinnamon, or to taste
Blend in the mashed bananas.
Scoop into loaf pan(s). Optional: Sprinkle top with coarse sugar + cinnamon. (The crispy top this creates can become soggy by the second day, so unless the loaf will be eaten immediately I recommend not topping it.)
Bake at 350 F for 55-60 minutes, 40-45 minutes for tea loaves, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool in pan(s) for 5 minutes. Remove from pan(s) and cool on rack.
Optional: Add chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit.
VERY SHORT BIO – Katharine Ashe
The American Library Association’s Booklist named Katharine Ashe among its “New Stars of Historical Romance,” and Library Journal’s starred review of her latest novel, When a Scot Loves a Lady, praises her “radiant prose.” She is two-time Reviewers’ Choice Best Book Award nominee. A professor of European history, Katharine lives in the wonderfully warm Southeast with her husband, son, two dogs, and a garden she likes to call romantic rather than unkempt.
Where to buy Katharine’s Book:
Thank you for stopping by! Be sure to let us know how you enjoyed the book and the recipe!
Have a great day!