Some of my cranberry stockpile was used last January for an apple-cranberry pie. It was good, but not postworthy. The pie's biggest problem was that it was too, too runny. I used the berries frozen, as was recommended by numerous web sites. However, this may have contributed to the slosh. For the Cranberry Huguenot, a new strategy was warranted.
Here is the technique. To begin, measure out the required amount of frozen berries, 2 cups for this recipe, place them into a colander and rinse under cold water. Discard any smooshed cranberries. As the berries drain in the colander, line a small baking sheet with paper towel. Spread the berries out on the baking sheet, blot them a bit with more paper towel, and put the pan into the refrigerator overnight. The next day, the cranberries are clean, dry, and still have a nice firmness. Why didn't the paper towel stick to the berries? I have no idea. I was concerned that would happen, but it did not.
The other twist in this recipe is the substitution of olive oil for butter. I've become obsessed with using olive oil in baking. When making this substitution, I follow the rules set forth by Lisa Sheldon at this web site. The Huguenot recipe calls for 1/2 cup butter. Accordingly, I used olive oil equal to two-thirds of that amount of butter. A 1/2 cup is 4 ounces. Two-thirds of 4 ounces is 75.6 grams. Using my kitchen scale, I pour 75 grams of extra virgin olive oil into my measuring cup.
NOTE: Every baker needs a kitchen scale. It is not an expensive item, but it is an essential tool. I use a My Weigh i5000 bowl scale, which was recommended at Cooking for Engineers. Baking is much easier, faster and more consistent when you need only weigh the ingredients in the mixing bowl, rather than messing around with measuring countless cups and partial cups.Finally, I baked this in a 9-inch Pyrex pie plate as that is the size pan called for in the original recipe, and I was too lazy to calculate what size rectangular pan would serve as an adequate substitute.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup white sugar (hold back 1 tablespoon)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups cranberries
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla
75 grams extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray baking pan with nonstick spray
In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Gently stir cranberries and nuts into the flour mixture. In a small bowl, lightly beat the 2 eggs, and then combine the eggs with the vanilla and oil. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture. Stir gently until combined. It will be relatively thick. Pour into the 9-inch Pyrex pie plate. Sprinkle the tablespoon of reserved sugar over the top of the cake.
Bake until set. Start checking at 40 minutes. In my oven, which is slow, the Huguenot needed 60 minutes. Insert a wooden toothpick into the middle of the cake; if it comes out clean, it is done.
Serve plain or with ice cream or whip cream. Enjoy!
Adapted from All Recipies.
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