Sunday, November 30, 2008

Bringing the Cranberries to Thanksgiving

When my family has Thanksgiving you can be sure that there will be at least one pumpkin treat, if not more, and in recent years I've made sure that pecans are represented as well. So this year, when others beat me to the pumpkin and pecan items, I was at a loss for what to make. I kept finding great looking recipes, but they all featured one of the two items that were already going to be accounted for when our families gathered for our first joint family Thanksgiving at my parents' house. Then I had a flash of genius: cranberries! I was already going to be buying some for the cranberry sauce, so why not just grab an extra bag. Then I quickly remembered this awesome cranberry walnut bread recipe that I saw on Katie's blog and my dessert was born.

I think this bread was a nice alternative to the pies that were brought along to the party (and my goodness were there a lot of pies!). It was a bit of a lighter bite, with a nice fresh taste, courtesy of the orange zest and juice and cranberries. The walnuts were also a nice addition, even though I am not crazy about them. This would be a great item to bring in to a work party or a Christmas event as a nice alternative to the traditional dessert items of the season. And it's also a great item because it can be made a day or two ahead of when you need it and will be perfect, I made this Wednesday evening and it was perfect.

Cranberry Walnut Bread

2 c. all purpose flour
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp grated orange zest
2/3 c. juice from an orange
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 c. shelled walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 1/4 c. fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a standard loaf pan.
In a small mixing bowl, combine orange juice, eggs, butter, and stir to combine thoroughly; set aside.
In large mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
Add orange zest and stir to combine.
Add wet ingredients to well in dry ingredients and mix until just combined (don't over mix).
Fold in walnuts and cranberries and transfer mixture to prepared loaf pan.
Place into oven and bake until knife inserted into center comes out clean, about 50-55 minutes.
Remove bread from oven and cool in pan for 15 minutes.
Remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack.
Wrap and put away for 1 to 2 days before serving.


Joelen said...

What a beautiful loaf!

Katie said...

Oh yay! I'm so glad you liked it too! Your loaf turned out beautifully!!