Cranberry Almond Snack Cake

October 17, 2020
0 Ratings
Author Notes

When I was in college I learned about baking from a variety of friends and roommates. My mother had never been a baker, but I began to get interested when I saw my roommates whip up what looked like relatively easy recipes, many from the Sunday New York Times Magazine section. This cake is inspired by a cranberry quick bread that I tasted courtesy of a college roommate who demonstrated to me that delicious things could come out of a kitchen the size of a closet with an oven the size of a shoebox. Hers was more like a bread, somewhat dense but in a good way. For my snack cake I added some egg white and creme fraiche to lighten the texture and also subbed in some almond flour for the all purpose. With a buttermilk and maple glaze on top, I'd say a cup of tea is the only thing you'll need once you are done baking. —navahfrost

  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Makes 1 8-inch square or round cake
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 tablespoons egg whites
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened at room temp
  • 1/4 cup creme fraiche
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons buttermilk
In This Recipe
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Place a rack in the center of the oven. Prepare an 8-inch round or square pan by lining it with parchment or foil and then grease and flour the surface to prevent sticking.
  2. In a large bowl, either by hand or with an electric mixer, beat the butter, creme fraiche and sugar until well incorporated. (If you are doing this by hand maybe start with a whisk and use some elbow grease so there are no lumps of butter). Add the almond extract, orange juice, whole egg and egg white, mixing until smooth. Add the dry ingredients next: almond flour, baking powder, soda, salt and all purpose flour, mixing just until there are no visible signs of anything powdery showing. (Don't mix forever, or gluten will start to develop and the cake will be tough). Fold in the cranberries.
  3. Spread the batter into the prepared pan, and bake on the center rack of your oven for approximately 45 minutes. Make sure to test it with a toothpick or cake tester before removing because some ovens are temperamental. The cake tester should come out clean. Rest the cake for 15-20 minutes in the pan before turning it out onto a rack to cool completely.
  4. While the cake cools, make the buttermilk glaze: measure 1 cup of powdered sugar into a small bowl and dribble the buttermilk in while mixing with a fork. It will be pasty and come together slowly. Add the maple syrup next. If at this point you see it's too thick to pour you can add more buttermilk. (This is really a glaze, not frosting so I keep it sort of runny.) Once it is smooth and pourable, spoon it over the cake and let it drip down the sides.
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