Thursday, December 9, 2010

Cranberry Nut Loaf - a delicious Christmas tradition

For me, it isn't the Christmas season until I taste this Cranberry Nut Loaf. The delicious burst of cranberry and orange in a tender loaf spiked with the crunch of nuts. Gorgeous when it is sliced for a tea or a buffet. A delicious and quick Christmas breakfast. Just slice and enjoy after a busy morning of gift exchange. I'm big into consumable gifts. Who needs another "thing" hanging around? Eat, enjoy and nothing to clutter the house. This is the perfect gift for teachers, neighbors and friends. Make a double batch (which makes 7 mini loaves) in one day and knock out 7 gifts! I am so excited to share this recipe with you.

Cranberry Nut Loaf

1 c. sugar
2 Tbl. shortening
1 egg
3/4 c. orange juice
2 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbl. grated orange peel (optional but delicious)

1 c. frozen cranberries rinses and coarsely chopped in food processor
1/2 cup of chopped nuts (I like pecans)

preheat oven to 350
Grease and flour loaf pan (9x5x3)
Cream shortening & sugar
add eggs and blend well
Add dry ingredients and orange juice alternating
Add orange peel
Stir in cranberries and nuts by hand (if you use the mixer, it will smash the cranberries too much and color the batter)
Bake 55 minutes

Icing: Confectionery sugar and water. Drizzle over cooled loaf.

If you double this recipe, you can make 7 mini-loaves or 5 mini-loaves and 1 regular loaf. Freezes well. Our Louisiana Satsumas are ripe just around this time so I have been using the juice and peel from this fruit for our loaves for the past few years. Delicious!

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