Saturday, January 29, 2011

Orange Ginger Cranberry Oat Bundt Cake

Whenever I think of a 'bundt' cake, I think of a scene in the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. I often joked with my husband that parts of our own love story were eerily similar to many parts of that movie. That's usually what happens when an ethnic family and an American family mix--it's a beautifully hilarious juxtaposition of norms.

In the scene I'm referring to, the American groom's parents are invited to the Greek bride's family's home for dinner and the groom's mother brings a bundt cake for the host (bride's mother). This is what I recall went down (upon receiving cake):

Maria Portokalos: "What is it?"
Mrs. Miller: "It's a bundt."
Maria Portokalos: "A Buntttttt?"
Mrs. Miller: "Bundt."
Maria Portokalos: "Bunk?"
Mrs. Miller: "Bundt."
Maria Portokalos: "Buuun-t."
Mrs. Miller: "Bundt, Bundt."
Aunt Frieda: " Einai cake, mori."
Maria Portokalos: "Ohhhh... It's a cake! I know! Thank you! Thank you very much!"
As she walks away, Maria Portocalas: 'There's a hole in this cake!' dinner with the neighbors again and cranberries going bad....time to get creative. I know that bundt cakes are too retro these days as cupcakes have become hip, but I couldn't resist since I need to justify my $3 Nordicware cake pan purchase 7 years ago. The reviews said that the oats give a nice crunch to the cake.

The recipe was modified (by myself) to include candied ginger....I think the flavor combination of cranberry-ginger-orange is wonderful, but you can leave the ginger out if you prefer. There's no denying the genius of orange and cranberries--like lemon & blueberries, cherries & almonds, vanilla & pear, butter & pecans, Fred & Ginger, love & marriage, martinis & aspirin, you get the picture...

Adapted from Better Homes & Gardens

2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups rolled oats
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup milk
2 cups fresh cranberries, chopped
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 heaping Tbsp. candied ginger, chopped (optional)
2 tsp. finely shredded orange peel

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan; set aside. In bowl stir together flour, oats, baking powder, soda, and salt.

In large mixing bowl beat butter with electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add the 1 cup sugar; beat until well combined. Add eggs; beat until well combined. Alternately add flour mixture and milk, beating on low speed after each addition until combined.

Toss cranberries with 2 tablespoons sugar; fold into batter with orange peel (and candied ginger, if using). Spoon batter into prepared pan; spread evenly.

Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Cool on rack. Prepare Orange Glaze; spoon over cooled cake. Let stand until glaze is set.

Makes 12 servings.

Orange Glaze:
In small bowl combine 1 cup powdered sugar and 1/2 teaspoon finely shredded orange peel. Add 2 to 3 teaspoons orange juice to make drizzling consistency.

Since my olfactory senses are temporarily suspended, I cannot tell you what it tasted like, but I can share that I got thumbs ups from the guests. I think that this cake might do really well served with some whipped cream and coffee..just a thought.

And since my camera battery died this afternoon at the park (hooray for swing time!), phone picture is all I can provide of cake's interior (sorry). Happy weekend! Hope you all get out and meet your neighbors!

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