Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Cranberry Coffee Cake

Recipe from Gourmet
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen
Makes 1 loaf

Well, this is just about the prettiest coffee cakes ever!  The cake is just slightly sweet and perfectly balanced with the tang of the cranberry swirls.  Serve this with hot coffee or tea for a special breakfast or break from your workday.  Give a few slices to your best buddies to sweeten their day.  All of the ingredients are available at our community-owned grocery store, Lost River Market and Deli.

1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
2 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries
1 ¾ cups sugar, divided
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup whole milk
Powdered sugar, optional garnish

Put a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350° F.  Generously butter a 9” x 5” loaf pan with the melted butter.
Pulse cranberries with ½ cup sugar in a food processor until finly chopped; do not puree.  Transfer to a sieve and let drain while you make the batter.
Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.  Combine 1 stick of room temperature butter with remaining 1 ¼ cups sugar in a large bowl and beat with a mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in vanilla.  Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture and milk alternately in three batches, beginning and ending wit the flour mixture and mixing until just incorporated.
Spread one third of the batter evenly in the loaf pan.  Spoon half of the drained cranberries evenly over the batter, leaving a ½ inch border on all sides.  Top with another third of batter and the remaining cranberries, then cover with the remaining batter.
Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes (My oven is a little off, so my cake took at least 65 minutes to complete.)
Cool cake in pan on a rack for at least 30 minutes.
Invert cake onto rack.  Serve warm or at room temperature, dusted with powdered sugar, if desired.

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