Welcome to my kitchen, fellow food enthusiasts! With the holiday season just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to dive into a festive and mouthwatering dessert that will have your taste buds dancing with joy. I present to you the delightful Cranberry Christmas Cake – a sweet, tart, and utterly irresistible treat that embodies the spirit of the holidays. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a novice looking to impress your loved ones, this recipe is a must-try.
Who’s This Recipe For?
This Cranberry Christmas Cake is for anyone who appreciates the harmony of sweet and tangy flavors in a moist, tender cake. It’s perfect for holiday gatherings, potlucks, or simply when you want to treat yourself to a slice of festive goodness. With its vibrant red cranberries peeking through, it’s a visually stunning addition to any dessert table.
Kitchen Equipment You’ll Need
Before we dive into the recipe, let’s make sure you have the necessary tools to create this Cranberry Christmas Cake masterpiece:
- Mixer: A stand mixer or a handheld electric mixer will make beating the eggs and sugar a breeze.
- 9×13 Inch Pan: Ensure it’s buttered or greased for easy removal of the cake.
- Mixing Bowls: You’ll need a few for different stages of the recipe.
- Spatula: For gently folding in the flour and cranberries.
- Toothpick: Essential for checking if the cake is done.
- Cooling Rack: To let your cake cool properly.
Now, let’s get down to baking business. Follow these simple steps to create your Cranberry Christmas Cake:
- 3 eggs
- 2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 12 oz fresh cranberries
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).
In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together using a mixer until the mixture becomes slightly thickened and light in color. This should take about 5-7 minutes, and the mixture should almost double in size. Don’t skip this step; it’s crucial for the cake’s texture.
Add the softened butter and vanilla to the egg-sugar mixture and continue to mix for an additional two minutes until well combined.
Gently stir in the all-purpose flour until just incorporated. Be careful not to overmix; you want a tender cake.
Now, it’s time to introduce the star of the show – the fresh cranberries. Fold them into the batter until evenly distributed, creating a colorful and tangy surprise in every bite.
Spread the batter evenly in your buttered 9×13-inch pan. You can also use parchment paper for easy removal and cleanup.
Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the cake is very lightly browned, and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. I recommend checking at the 40-minute mark to avoid overbaking. I baked mine for 43 minutes, and it was perfect.
Once baked, allow the cake to cool completely in the pan before cutting it into small, party-friendly slices. I like to cut mine into pieces about 1″x 2″ for easy serving.
Finally, savor the delightful balance of sweet and tart in every bite. This Cranberry Christmas Cake is a true holiday indulgence!
Recipe Tips and Variations
- For an extra festive touch, sprinkle powdered sugar on top of the cooled cake.
- If you’re short on time, you can use a food processor to chop the cranberries into smaller pieces.
- Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream for added richness.
- Consider adding a handful of chopped nuts, such as pecans or walnuts, for a delightful crunch.
- Swap out the cranberries for blueberries or raspberries for a different fruity twist.