When I ran my bakery, one of our more popular items was Cranberry Orange bread, and for the life of me I could not figure out why. I hated it. I vividly recall mixing it in enormous batches that would make maybe 40 loaves, plus muffins, and the weird curdling thing that would happen with the batter when I added orange juice to the butter and sugar. But hey, lots of other folks liked it, so I kept it on the permanent menu. Four years of mixing the sloppy batter pretty well killed any desire I might have had to ever eat it again.
Today, for the first time in years I actually made cranberry orange bread again, because I had a ton of dried cranberries that I had to do something with. Totally new recipe though, and much more to my taste. I added yogurt (though I think sour cream would also work), and mixing that with the butter and sugar and eggs made a more cakey bread that my kids could not get enough of. They were like little wolves when it came out of the oven – circling around and around the bread reaching for more nibbles.
Also, I’m always looking for ways to get my four-year old involved in cooking without burning her or addicting her to sugar in the process, and this recipe provides just the thing – juicing the oranges was perfect, and she got to drink the remainder.
Cranberry Orange Bread
1 stick butter (salted)
1 C sugar
1/2 C plain yogurt or sour cream
1/2 C orange juice
1 Tb vanilla
Zest of one orange
1 C white flour
1 C whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 C dried cranberries
sliced almonds for the top (optional)
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9″ loaf pan and set aside. Cream butter and sugar until light. Add eggs and yogurt and continue mixing. Mix ing orange juice, vanilla and zest. Add baking soda and flours and mix until just combined. Add cranberries, and pour batter into prepared pan. If desired, dump a handfull of almonds over the top.
Bake anywhere from 50 – 65 minutes, depending on your oven, until a toothpick comes out clean.