#blogtour – The Little Bakery on Rosemary Lane by Ellen Berry @FionaGibson @AvonBooksUK @Sabah_K

I’m so excited to be kicking off the blog tour for The Little Bakery on Rosemary Lane by Ellen Berry. It sounds right up my street and I’m disappointed I haven’t had time to read it yet but I can share with you a fabulous recipe from Ellen.

First of all, here’s what the book is about:

If you want to move forward, sometimes you have to go back …

Prepare to fall in love with beautiful village of Burley Bridge.

Growing up in a quiet Yorkshire village, Roxanne couldn’t wait to escape and find her place in the world in London. As a high-powered fashion editor she lives a glamorous life of perennial singlehood – or so it seems to her sister Della. But when Roxanne gets her heart broken by a fashion photographer, she runs away, back to Della’s welcoming home above her bookshop in Burley Bridge.

But Burley Bridge, Roxanne discovers, is even quieter than she remembered. There’s nothing to do, so Roxanne agrees to walk Della’s dog Stanley. It’s on these walks that Roxanne makes a startling discovery: the people who live in Burley Bridge are, well, just people – different from the fashion set she’s used to, but kind and even interesting. Michael, a widower trying to make a go of a small bakery, particularly so. Little by little, cupcake by cupcake, Roxanne and Michael fall into a comforting friendship.

Could there be a life for Roxanne after all, in the place she’s spent 46 years trying to escape?

Sounds great, right? Here comes the recipe!

Cut-out Iced Biscuits for Kids (and you) / Ellen Berry

When our twin boys and daughter were little, I had a personal rule that we had to get out of the house every day. Some time spent larking about in the park, on a walk or messing about at the river kept everyone sane.

However, the odd rainy day did keep us penned up indoors, when we’d tend to hang out in the kitchen together. Although I’m not a natural baker, having a few fail-safe recipes to hand was a huge help on those wet-weather days. The recipes had to be quick and easy so the kids could get involved at every stage. These buttery biscuits are perfect. The recipe makes about 50 – and I have yet to meet a child who doesn’t love messing about with cutters and dough.

This recipe works best if you can factor in time to chill the dough for at least an hour before cutting out – but it’s not essential, if you need a ‘what are we doing NOW?’ activity to keep everyone happy. My kids are all young adults now but I still have happy memories of those rainy days, our home filled with the smell of baking biscuits – and, yes, our kitchen utterly wrecked.

You’ll need:
175 g unsalted butter
200 g caster sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
400 g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
Generous pinch of salt
300 g icing sugar
Food colouring and perhaps some sprinkles

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4.
2. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in the eggs and vanilla.
3. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add these dry ingredients to the butter and eggs and mix to form a soft dough, adding another sprinkling of flour if necessary, until it’s ready to roll.
4. Divide the dough into two portions, wrap with cling film and chill in the fridge for an hour, if you have time.
5. Sprinkle some flour on a flat surface and roll out a portion of dough to around ½ cm thick. Cut out your shapes and place on trays lined with baking parchment/greaseproof paper. Bake for 8-12 minutes until lightly golden. Do the same with the second portion of dough (or freeze it for another day’s baking).
6. Allow the biscuits to cool completely then ice. To make the icing, add two teaspoons of hot water from the kettle to the sieved icing sugar. Stir until smooth, adding more water drop by
drop as needed. Divide your white icing into bowls and colour each one to your heart’s desire.

They sound great, thank you Ellen!

Thank you to Sabah Khan from Avon for the place on the blog tour. Please do check out the other blogs taking part for a mixture of reviews and other content.

Ellen Berry is an author and magazine journalist. Originally from rural West Yorkshire, she has three teenage children and lives with her husband and their daughter in Glasgow. When she’s not writing, she loves to cook and browse her vast collection of cookbooks, which is how the idea for this story came about. However, she remains the world’s worst baker but tends to blame her failures on ‘the oven’.

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