Romance Cooks

Not Your Grandmother’s Fruitcake – Lou Harper

Fruitcake by Lou HarperFruitcakes get bad rap. Most people think of them as overly sweet and heavy enough to sink a boat. I can assure you, dear reader, this recipe is nothing like that.

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6 oz butter

4 eggs

1 1/2 cup of flour

1 cup of brown sugar, packed

1 tablespoon dark molasses

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup dried fruit, chopped (I like cranberries, apricots, mangoes, but whatever floats your boat is fine.)

1/2 cup chopped nuts (Again, whatever you prefer.)

2 tablespoon orange liquor 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

1/4 cup crystallized brown sugar


Macerate the dried fruit with the liquor for at least an hour, possibly overnight.

Preheat oven to 350º F

Butter a loaf pan and dust it with crystallized brown sugar. Shake out the excess. This will keep the cake from sticking and also creates a sweet and crunchy crust.

Cream the butter with the brown sugar.

Mix in molasses.

Add eggs one by one.

Mix the flour and baking powder together, add to the egg mixture. Combine well.

Fold in the fruits and nuts, add vanilla.

Pour the batter into the loaf pan.

Bake for 50 minutes, or till toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let it cool.

This fruitcake is great with coffee, tea, with jam spread over it, or just by itself.



Sam Mayne’s life is as dull as the dishwater in his small-town Montana diner, and that’s just how he wants it. Quiet, uneventful, safe from his shadowy past. The breezy young drifter who answers his help-wanted ad makes him uneasy in ways he dare not examine too closely. Except he can’t help but be pulled in by Jay Colby’s spunky attitude, endless stories, and undeniable sex appeal.

Fresh off yet another romantic disaster, Jay doesn’t understand his attraction to the taciturn line cook, but there’s no fighting the chemistry that lands them in bed together. Where Sam’s subtly dominant streak takes command, and Jay delights in discovering the pleasures of his submissive side.

Safe in the assumption their relationship is temporary, neither lover holds back when the heat is on. Until Sam’s deadly past catches up with them with a vengeance, forcing him to drop the life he’s built, pick up his lover, and run. As danger cuts closer to the bone, Sam and Jay are forced to face the truth. About themselves, about the depth of their love—and the newly forged bonds that are about to be tested to the limit.

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