With all of these fresh cranberries at the grocery store right now, I’ve been inspired to try out some new recipes. This one comes from an old, out-of-print, Martha Stewart cookbook I have, called Martha Stewart’s Quick Cook: 200 easy and elegant recipes from the author of Entertaining.
I’ve had this book for almost 20 years and it is still a “go-to” for me. Back then, it was the first cookbook I used when attempting to host elegant dinner parties for my friends (at the ripe old age of 20). The fact that this was her version of a 30-minute meal was lost on me. It all seemed so over-the-top. Menus like: Chicken Paillard, Risotto with Porcini, Hot Salad of Escarole and Pancetta, Italian Flat Breads and Oranges in Red Wine don’t exactly evoke the thought, “quick and easy,” but indeed, while these recipes are very elegant, they’re not sooo time-consuming.
Like this cranberry kuchen for example. Basically, you make a compote in one pan, whip up a batter in a bowl, pour them both in a cake pan and bake. If you have an oven-proof, decorative, round pan, then definitely bake it in that. Then you’ve got oven-to-table ease. A springform pan would be another way to go. I currently have neither of those, so I ended up cutting the cake into bite-size pieces and serving them on a platter, which would be a good way to present it on a buffet table. It’s definitely best served hot from the oven. That way, the cake part is moist and fluffy and the cranberry compote is warm and comforting. It’s almost like a cobbler in that state. You can also serve it with cream and a sprinkling of sugar.
Martha’s recipe calls for the juice and zest of an orange. I decided to try it with a grapefruit and compensate with a little extra sugar. It was fine, but an orange might be better. Try it and let me know what you think.
The other substitution I made was to substitute Oikos Greek Yogurt for the sour cream that is called for in Martha’s version. The nice people at Stonyfield Farms recently sent me a few free sample coupons, so I’ve been using it in recipes that call for sour cream and it’s great. It has absolutely NO fat in it. Amazing.
Stonyfield Farms Oikos Greek Yogurt
(Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Quick Cook)
Makes one 9-inch round cake
12 oz bag of fresh cranberries
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp sugar
1/4 cup water
Juice of 1 grapefruit
2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/4 cup sugar
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cups milk
3 Tbsp Stonyfield Farms™ Oikos yogurt
Grated rind of 1 grapefruit
Fresh grated nutmeg to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Spray a 9-inch round baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a small saucepan, combine all of the ingredients for the topping. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook until the cranberries are soft, about 10 minutes. Set aside.
3. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring well to incorporate.
4. Sift together the flour and the baking powder. Stir the flour into the butter mixture, a little at a time, alternating with the milk and the yogurt. Stir in the grapefruit rind and nutmeg.
5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and top with the cranberry mixture. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove and serve immediately with cream and a sprinkling of sugar.