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Hello and welcome to Romance Recipes!  Every Thursday and Friday I will introduce you to a new author and a new recipe!  Two of my favorite things!  This week I am bringing you author, Alyssa Alexander, and her recipe for Herbed Legumes along with an introduction to her historical romantic suspense WIP (work-in-progress), To Tempt A Smuggler.  Please join me in welcoming Alyssa and savor her recipe for Herbed Legumes as you read about her WIP!


Herbed Legumes (The perfect side dish!)

I know, I know. Beans. No one likes beans. (Or at least, I don’t.) But I promise, you will love these! I’ve made many a believer of the joy of beans with this recipe—actually, it’s not the joy of beans, it’s the joy fragrant herbs. Herbs, spices and aromatics build the base of most dishes. If you season and spice a dish right, almost anything will be delicious! Grace, the heroine of my recent WIP, To Tempt A Smuggler, is a healer. She’s familiar with various herbs and plants and their properties, both medicinal and for cooking. Though this recipe contains the best aromatics (in my opinion), shallots and garlic, the primary herb is rosemary. In Grace’s honor, I bring you this recipe for sautéed and herbed legumes.

1 T. extra virgin olive oil

1 large shallot, diced

1-2 garlic cloves, diced small

1 T. fresh rosemary, chopped

3 T. dry white wine (unoaked is best)

3 T. Chicken stock

1  15 oz. can garbanzo beans or cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Kosher salt & fresh ground pepper, to taste

4 oz prosciutto, diced

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add shallots to pan. Sauté until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Add garlic and sauté an additional 1 minute. Add chopped rosemary and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the white wine and let simmer until the wine is absorbed. Add stock, beans, salt and pepper. Sauté until broth is absorbed. Remove from heat and add prosciutto. Serve immediately.

NOTE: You can use red onion instead of shallots and bacon instead of prosciutto. Also, amounts are approximate, as with all cooking. I add more rosemary, garlic and shallots than called for, and lots of fresh ground pepper!



To Tempt A Smuggler is about a poor relation turned smuggler who is forced to marry the spy that suspects her of treason. Between arrests, escapes, deceit and murder, she finds herself falling in love with the man behind the spy. Yet his past holds a dark secret. When he must make a choice between marriage or spying, that secret threatens to tear them apart. To save their lives, they must fight a traitor. To save their love, they must expose the truth.


Excerpt from To Tempt A Smuggler:

Her gown was a beacon in the dark, floating around her as she guided him down the garden paths. The night was still, without the slightest breeze to stir the leaves, so that it seemed the only living thing was Miss Hannah. Heat lay heavy on the foliage, drawing out the heady scents of the blooming summer flowers. Their sweet bouquet enveloped him, drew him in.

“What do you think is hiding in the dark, Miss Hannah?” He gestured toward the garden. “What unseen delights await?”

She crouched, then stood again with a thin stalk of late blooming lavender. She twirled the lavender and studied the quiet gardens. “Perhaps a chivalric knight is waiting to rescue a maiden.”

“With his sword drawn and ready and his charger prancing among the rhododendrons,” he finished, watching the moonlight play over her features. She was a romantic at heart, he realized.

“But perhaps it’s a dashing highwayman, waiting to waylay the guests and steal kisses from beautiful maidens,” she laughed.

“Or perhaps a faerie queen waits for her lover among the blossoms and blooms.” He stepped closer, whispering in her ear. “Every pleasure, any pleasure, may be waiting in the dark.”

She tilted her head to watch him through long gold lashes. One corner of her full mouth rose slowly up, then the other. Lust arrowed through him and wiped all thought of treason from his mind. Had he seen her smile before? Not like that. The slow half-smile was seductive and sultry.

This was the passionate woman he’d kissed.

“Perhaps a smuggling earl awaits in the dark,” she whispered.

“Ah, yes. My second career.” He plucked the lavender from her fingers and held it to his nose, breathed deep. And smelled her. He struggled to focus. “Perhaps I’ll buy my own ship and hire a crew to smuggle goods from France. Then I would truly thrill the local ladies.”

“But you wouldn’t be a smuggler as much as you would be a captain, would you?”

“Ah, not just a captain—a smuggling captain. And if I were a smuggling captain I could sail the seven seas, collecting gold and riches from the far corners of the world.”

“You could, but that wouldn’t thrill the local ladies, would it? If you’re off sailing the seas and collecting gold you wouldn’t be here in Devon to dazzle them with your exploits.” She angled her head, pursed her lips in a playful pout.

“I did promise to keep my consort content, did I not? I must impress her with my fantastic deeds.” He stepped forward so that they were only inches apart and tried to battle back desire. “I’d come to her in the deepest night, when others slept and they were alone. No one to hear. No one to see.”

He saw her breath catch, saw her breasts rise and fall with it.

“What would they do in the night? In the dark?” she whispered.

“They’d feel. There’s no sight in the dark, there’s only texture, sound. Sensation.” He could all but taste her, cool and sweet. He leaned in so that his lips hovered just above hers. “Close your eyes,” he breathed. When she did as he asked, her lashes fluttering down to curtain her eyes, he lost the battle with himself.


Meet Alyssa:

Alyssa Alexander lives Michigan, a state with hot summers and really, really cold winters. She’s married to a wonderful man who is tolerant of over-flowing bookshelves and eating pizza for dinner on a regular basis. She also lives with one sassy cat, one stupid cat, and a very active four-year-old, who thankfully enjoys pizza as well. When she’s not working at her day job, writing, cleaning house, scaling Mount Laundry or doing any of the other tasks a wife, mother and writer must do, she can usually be found sitting on her deck with a book in her hand.


Author links (website, FB, twitter, blog, etc.)


Twitter: https://twitter.com/alexanderalyssa/

Facebook: Alyssa Alexander Author

Blog: http://dashingduchesses.com/

Thank you for joining us for another Romance Recipe! I hope you’ll stop by next week to meet another author, try a new recipe and read a new book!