Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cranberry Vanilla Coffee Cake

This is a great way to enjoy all of those fresh cranberries that are available right now. I subbed extract for the vanilla bean, but otherwise kept faithful to the original.

One year ago today (wow, the first time I can do this!): Pork Strips with Asian Style Green Beans

Cranberry Vanilla Coffee Cake (adapted from Smitten Kitchen, originally Gourmet)

1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, divided
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
2 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries (6 ounces)
2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened, divided
2 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk

1. Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in middle. Generously butter a 9- by 2-inch round cake pan. Line bottom with a round of parchment paper and butter parchment.
2. Pulse cranberries with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla in processor until finely chopped (do not purée).
3. Whisk together 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt.
4. Beat together 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup sugar, and 1/2 tsp vanilla in a bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy.
5. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down side and bottom of bowl.
6. Reduce speed to low and mix in flour mixture and milk alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour, until just combined.
7. Spread half of batter in pan, then spoon cranberries over it, leaving a 1/2-inch border around edge. Spoon small bits of the remaining batter over the top of the cranberries and smooth them with as gentle of a hand as possible.
8. Blend remaining 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 tsp vanilla, and remaining tablespoon each of butter and flour using your fingertips. Crumble over top of cake.
9. Bake until a wooden pick inserted into cake (not into cranberry filling) comes out clean and side begins to pull away from pan, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in pan 30 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely, crumb side up.

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