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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Cranberry Upside-Downer

I decided that since it is now February, it was time to use up the cranberries that I had been hoarding in my freezer since fall (and make more room for chili!). I flipped through my copy of Baking: From My Home to Yours, and saw the Cranberry Upside-Downer. It looked simple, I had all the ingredients on hand, and seemed like it would be delicious. I made some vanilla ice cream to go along with it, as Dorie suggests (and I am never one to turn down ice cream!). This turned out SO good! I will definitely be making this one again next winter!

Cranberry Upside-Downer
From Baking: From My Home to Yours, by Dorie Greenspan

~1 cup all purpose flour
~1 tsp baking powder
~1 tsp ground cinnamon
~1/4 tsp salt
~1 3/4 sticks (14 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
~1 cup minus 2 Tablespoons sugar
~1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
~2 cups cranberries-fresh or frozen(if frozen, do not thaw)
~2 large eggs
~1 tsp vanilla extract
~1/3 cup whole milk
~1/3 cup red currant jelly, for glazing the cake

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350F. Put a 8x2 inch round cake pan on a baking sheet. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Melt 6 Tablespoons of the butter in a small saucepan. Sprinkle in 6 Tablespoons of the sugar and cook, stirring, until the mixture comes to a boil. Pour this evenly over the bottom of the cake pan, then scatter over the nuts and top with the cranberries, smoothing the layer and pressing it down gently with your fingertips. (If frozen berries cause the butter to congeal, don’t worry - everything will melt in the oven.) Set aside.

Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the remaining stick of butter on medium speed until smooth. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and continue to beat until pale and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each addition and scraping down the bowl as needed. Pour in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add half of the dry ingredients, mixing only until they disappear into the batter. Mix in the milk, then the rest of the dry ingredients. Spoon the batter over the cranberries and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a thin knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove it from the oven and run a blunt knife between the sides of the pan and the cake. Carefully turn the cake out onto a serving platter. If any of the berries stick to the pan-as they might-just scrape them off with a table knife and return them to the cake.

Warm the jelly in a small saucepan over low heat, or do this in a microwave oven.
Gently brush the glaze over the hot cake.


Bridget said...

Oh, good to hear a good review of this. I love cranberries, and I have very little experience with upside-down cakes.

Joelen said...

Beautiful job! Upside down cakes make me nervous and you make it look so easy!

That Girl said...

This does look much easier than a towering layer cake!

Anonymous said...

That's weird that you have to bring a cake on your wedding anniversary!

Looks delish!

TPOX said...

I didn't *have* to bring a *cake* but you are supposed to provide treats of some kind on your birthday. Most people extend that to anniversaries, and I often bring stuff to work for no reason, so certainly was going to when I DID have a reason! :-)

Anonymous said...

OMGOSH! LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE cranberry! Must make this!!