Everyone Loves a Tea Cake

Autumn, breakfast, Dairy Free, quick breads and tea cakes

It feels like this blog has been a little heavy on the baked goods lately, and it’s only going to be more so with Hanukka coming up. However before we dive into the world of latkes (potato pancakes) and jelly filled doughnuts- two Hanukka staples- I have one last (ha!) cranberry recipe to share.

This is a really adorable little bread. It is pretty when sliced, when you can see the layers of chopped cranberries, and it bakes into a very nice golden-yellow color which looks especially appetizing against the red berries. I changed the recipe to make it dairy free and a little less sugar-filled. The result still tastes tender and plenty sweet to me, but I will give you both my measurements and what the original recipe called for, so you can choose for yourself. I like it toasted for breakfast with some buttery spread or mild goat cheese. Yum!

Cranberry Tea Cake, adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook

2 cups (8 oz) fresh cranberries (or frozen, UNthawed)

1 cup sugar, divided (recipe called for 1 and 3/4 cups)

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 Earth Balance Vegan Buttery stick, or 8 tbs of your favorite non-hydrogenated margarine, softened

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup whole milk

Put a rack in middle of oven and preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9-by-5 inch loaf pan.

Pulse cranberries with 1/3 cup sugar (original recipe used 1/2 cup here) in a food processor until finely chopped; do not puree. Transfer to s sieve and let drain while you make the batter.

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Combine the margarine and remaining 2/3 cup sugar (or 1 1/4 cups if you following the original measurements) in a large bowl and beat with an electric 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 and milk alternately in 3 batches, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing until just incorporated.

Spread one third of the batter evenly in loaf pan. Spread half the drained cranberries evenly over the batter, trying as best you can to leave a 1/2-inch border on all sides (it’s okay if it’s not perfect). Top with another 1/3 portion of batter, then remaining cranberries and then cover with remaining batter.

Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick or skewer inserted into center comes out clean, 50 minutes to one hour. Cool cake in pan on a rack for 30 minutes. Invert cake onto rack. Serve warm or at room temperature, dusted with confectioners’ sugar if desired.

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