It’s time to set the little things aside and allow the holiday spirit to set in. We’re in Washington D.C. this week at our parents home for Christmas and last week felt like a mad storm getting here in one piece. If you’re traveling this week, you know what we mean! Let’s let the hustle and bustle from last week subside and let us focus on more important things. We’re starting with sweet cranberry dotted apple caramel cake with hints of orange!
Have you ever seen a recipe on a blog or cookbook and knew immediately you needed to make it? Perhaps your inner culinary instincts went off because the flavor combinations screamed out to you. When we saw this recipe from Ina Garten several weeks ago, it was game over. It’s the season for cranberries and oranges and this cake had our naturally sweet ingredients written all over it.
We’ve found that most of Ina Garten’s recipes lean toward the simple side. She likes no fuss recipes. We kept the process the same but simply switched out the sugars and decreased the fat slightly so this cake was a bit healthier. It’s already packed with fruit and just the right amount of cinnamon. It’s easy to justify as a sweet bread pudding that could be served for breakfast or brunch. It’s baked in a tart or pie pan which makes it thinner and very dense. It’s a true easy, casual cake recipe fit for any time of the day.
The naturally sweet ingredients of this cake really shine. The apples and cranberries are mixed with fresh orange juice and coconut sugar to create a delicious fruity, caramel base. The cake portion is mixed with honey powder (which you can find here) or maple sugar (find it here). Both are an excellent addition to this cake as it pairs so well with the cranberries and orange.
Cranberries and apples become sweet and soft. The fruit helps keep this cake moist and fresh for up to 3-4 days if stored in an airtight container. Honey, vanilla and orange makes the flavors pop in every bite. I hope, with the festive flavors of this cake, it’s the perfect treat to brighten up your holiday table!
Cranberry Apple Cake
1 Large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced
1/2 cup Coconut Sugar
1 Tablespoon Orange Zest
1/4 cup Fresh Orange Juice
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
3 Large Eggs, at room temperature
1 cup Honey Powder or Maple Sugar
1/3 cup Unsalted Butter, melted and slightly cooled
1/2 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1/4 cup Sour Cream
1 cup White Wheat Flour
1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Combine the cranberries, apple, coconut sugar, orange zest, orange juice, and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon in a medium bowl. Set aside.
With an electric mixer or beaters, beat eggs on medium-high speed for about 2 minutes. Add the honey or maple sugar, melted butter, vanilla, and sour cream and beat just until combined. Reduce speed and slowly add flour and salt.
In a 10-inch tart or pie dish, pour the fruit evenly in the dish. Pour the batter over the fruit completely. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean and the fruit is bubbling. The cake will be very golden but honey bakes more quickly than sugar so please watch to make sure it does not burn.
Serve warm or at room temperature, dusted with sugar-free powdered sugar or topped with whipped cream.
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten