This is a quick bread made with cornmeal, adapted from a Williams-Sonoma holiday cookbook. They suggested serving it as a bread with your holiday meal, but we've always liked it for breakfast during the holiday season. Eat plain, or toast individual slices in your toaster oven (it's too crumbly for a regular toaster) and top with butter and orange marmalade. Yum! Because of the cornmeal, the bread has a bit of a crunch to it when toasted.
- 1 1⁄2 cups fresh cranberries or 1 1⁄2 cups frozen cranberries
- 1 orange, zest of, grated
- 1 cup sugar, divided
- 1 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1⁄2 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1⁄2 cup fresh orange juice
- 1⁄2 cup water
- Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 325.
- Grease an 8x5 or 9x5 loaf pan. Cut a piece of wax paper or parchment paper to line the bottom of the pan, then grease the bottom again. (otherwise your lovely loaf might stick to the pan!).
- Sort the cranberries and discard any soft ones. Coarsely chop the cranberries (I pulse a couple of times with my food processor) and place in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the orange zest & 1/2 cup of the sugar and heat slowly just to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Set aside to cool.
- In a bowl stir together the flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder & baking soda.
- In a separate bowl combine the butter and remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Beat until light & fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the egg.
- Stir in half the flour mixture, and then the orange juice & water. Stir in the remaining flour mixture and then the cooled cranberry mixture. Don't overmix.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Place in the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, 55-60 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack, peel the wax paper from the bottom of the loaf, and cool completely. Slice & serve.
- Note: This recipe doesn't double well. The batter is light & airy, and too voluminous even for my Kitchenaid stand mixer. If I want to make 2 loaves, I mix them up separately. But I put each loaf in the oven as soon as it is mixed up because the baking powder is already activated. Then I know if, for example, 10 minutes have passed before the 2nd loaf goes in, I will pull the 1st loaf out when the timer goes off, then set the timer again for another 10 minutes for the 2nd loaf.