quick cranberry cake
November 1, 2010 § 35 Comments
I went on a bit of a baking bender last weekend. Possibly making up for a dry spell, I churned out cookies, brownies, bread, and a cranberry cake. It all sounds very impressive until I admit that I haven’t actually cooked dinner in almost two weeks. It’s surprising how far sandwiches and eating out will take you, but at this point I’m pretty much relying on the cranberry cake to count as my ‘fruits and vegetables’ serving. Cranberries are practically a vegetable, right?
If you’re too busy to cook though, this cake is both quick and totally more worth the effort than real food (although I do recommend occasionally eating vegetables). I made it because I saw cranberries at the store for the first time this year and fell over myself in excitement to get them, narrowly avoiding taking out the nearby shoppers in my haste.
I love baked goods with cranberries, and this cake is a perfect example of why: it’s moist and dense and sweet, but the tartness of the cranberries in every bite balances it all out. It’s also seriously easy: one bowl, 10 minutes of mixing, then pop it in the oven. Out comes a cake that, despite its simplicity, and the fact that there are several other desserts sharing its spotlight, disappears surprisingly quickly.
Cranberry Cake – adapted from Vanilla Garlic
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsalted butter, slightly softened and cut into chunks
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons whole milk
2 cups flour
2 1/2 cups cranberries (12 ounce bag)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×13 pan or a 10-inch springform pan.
In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugar for 5-7 minutes, until eggs have increased in volume and stream into ribbons when you lift the beaters. Add butter and vanilla and beat until incorporated, about 2 minutes. Beat in milk and salt.
Stir in flour, then fold in cranberries. Scrape batter into prepared pan.
Bake for approximately an hour, until a tester comes out clean (but there might be cranberry juices on it). Cool on a wire rack. If using springform, run a knife around the cake and then unmold.