Tag Archives: cranberry

Chocolate Cranberry Curd Tart

BY HELEN S. FLETCHER, ON
COPYRIGHT, HELEN S. FLETCHER, 2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
ALL PHOTOS BY PASTRIES LIKE A PRO UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

Chocolate Cranberry Curd TartChocolate Cranberry Curd had become an absolute favorite for the holidays at the bakery. Besides its vibrant color, the taste and texture are outstanding. We used it in tarts, cakes and petit fours. Room permitting, we would freeze cases of cranberries at the end of the season in order to get a head start the following season and test new recipes during the year.

I love cranberries so much that the staff would have to make me take some of the cranberry desserts off the menu so we could put other seasonal items on.  There is nothing like the sweet tart taste and the intense red color enclosed in a deep chocolate brown glaze.

The tart itself is easy to make with its press in crust which means no rolling.  The cranberry curd itself has one extra step as you have to cook the cranberries and puree them before actually making the curd.  The glaze is a simple matter two ingredients which make the perfect finish. Continue reading

Orange Cranberry Cake – A Holiday Specialty

BY HELEN S. FLETCHER, ON
COPYRIGHT, HELEN S. FLETCHER, 2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
ALL PHOTOS BY PASTRIES LIKE A PRO UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

Finished sliceOrange Cranberry Cake is one example of my love of cranberries.  Their tartness allows them to be paired with sweet items perfectly.  As oranges and cranberries go so well together, I decided this year to come up with a light but intense cake with depths of flavor that also looks stunning.  This Orange Cranberry Cake was the answer.

The orange chiffon cake is as light as a feather.  It is delicious on its own and can be baked in a tube pan, loaf pan or bundt pan if you want a more simple version.  We paired this at the bakery with a passion fruit buttercream for an unusual flavor combination for wedding cakes.  As with all chiffons, it is easy, easy to make.  Basically all the ingredients except the egg whites and a portion of the sugar are mixed in one bowl.  While the egg whites are beaten with the sugar to the soft peak stage.   The most important thing to watch with this cake is to make sure your egg whites are not overbeaten. Eight to ten minutes later the layers are done.  They will be very thin and that is how they should be. These can be frozen for assembly later if desired.  I realize most people don’t have 5 cake pans.  If you don’t see yourself using multiple cake pans very often, consider buying 9″ foil cake pans that are disposable.  Although I generally don’t spray the sides of the pans, if these are rippled or crimped, spray well.

The Cranberry Filling can be made a week ahead of time.  If tasted seperately, it seems tart.  But every other component in this cake is sweet and the tartness is the perfect addition to cut the sweetness. Continue reading

Fall Muffins – Apple, Pumpkin and Cranberry

BY HELEN S. FLETCHER, ON
COPYRIGHT, HELEN S. FLETCHER, 2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
ALL PHOTOS BY PASTRIES LIKE A PRO UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

Mixed BasketWhile muffins are good all year long, I think of them particularly in the fall.  Temperatures start dropping, sweaters and jackets come out, massive amounts of colored leaves drift down in a lazy dance and it’s a good time to turn the oven on and bake a batch of muffins.  These easiest of baked goods are so simple to put together there is a term in baking called the muffin method.  Essentially all the dry and wet ingredients are mixed together separately.  They are then combined and that’s it.  Drop them into the cups, bake and enjoy.

What flavors are more indicative of fall than apples, pumpkin and cranberries?

As an added bonus, all these freeze well – if they stick around long enough.  They also have a good shelf life as they can be held at room temperature for a couple of days.  The size of the muffins can be increased if you want the large “Texas muffins”. Just fill the cups to the same height and bake a bit longer.  A tester should come out clean when inserted in the middle of a couple of muffins.  Be sure to test the ones on the inside of the muffin pan as they will be the slowest to finish.  As a generality, you will get about 1/3 less muffins.

So turn that oven on, get a couple of bowls and start mixing.  Bake one or bake them all.  Bake them large or bake them small.   A small investment in time will yield a big reward in enjoyment. Continue reading