New Recipe Favorites Featuring Cranberries

Not too long ago I was given a ton of cranberries from a good friend (it's time to harvest them here) and so I've been on the lookout for some new recipes that call for fresh cranberries (it's amazing how many call for dried and sweetened ones!). I was lent a copy of The Cranberry Homemakers Cookbook from another friend and have so far tried out three recipes that have been hits! I thought that I would take the time to share them here.

Both the Cranberry Crunch and the Chocolate Cranberry bread have already been made twice and since disappeared! Yum..yum! I just baked the muffins tonight and they are already disappearing fast from the kitchen counter.

Chocolate Cranberry Bread

1 1/2 C all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 C dairy sour cream
3/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
6 T butter (softened)
1 C granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 C fresh or frozen cranberries (coarsley chopped)
2 (1.5 oz.) bars of solid dark chocolate (coarsley chopped)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside. In another bowl, blend sour cream and cocoa powder; set aside. In a third bowl, beat butter until creamy. Gradually beat in sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in vanilla. Stir in flour mixture alternately with sour cream mixture, just until combined. Stir in cranberries and chopped dark chocolate. Spoon batter into prepared pan.

Bake 55-65 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 15 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on a wire rack. Refrigerate leftovers. Makes 1 loaf.

Cranberry Crunch

1 C sugar
1 T cornstarch (I used 2 teaspoonss of tapioca in place of the cornstarch)
1/2 C water
1 tsp vanilla
2 C fresh cranberries
1 C uncooked oatmeal
1 C brown sugar
1/2 C flour
1/3 C magarine

Mix sugar, tapioca (or cornstarch), water and salt well. Stir in cranberries; simmer 5 minutes, let cool slightly. Combine oatmeal, brown sugar, flour and margarine; sprinkle half into an 8x8 inch pan. Spread cranberries over the top and place remaining oatmeal mixture on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Cranberry Walnut Muffins (I made these without the walnuts)

2 C flour
2/3 C sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 C apples (chopped)
1 C fresh or frozen cranberries (sliced or chopped)
1/2 C walnuts (if you want)
1 egg (lightly beaten)
3/4 C milk
3 T butter (melted)

Topping: (I didn't do the topping either)
1/4 C sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray or line pan with muffin liners. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Then stir in the apples, cranberries and walnuts. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg and then stir in the milk and melted butter. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients, mixing until just moistened. Spoon batter into muffin tins. Combine the topping (if using) ingredients and sprinkle on top of the batter. Bake 18 minutes or until done. Makes 1 dozen standard size muffins.

And I have to say that I like my friend Stacy's advice when it comes to thinking about the mess one makes in the kitchen when may as well double the batch and make it all worthwhile!