Monday, November 30, 2009

Thankful - Cranberry Pecan Cake

My one year old niece has just recently learned how to say my name. She omits the "E" at the beginning, so it's just "Lissa," but it's the best sound. I couldn't hear it enough. She has about a billion nicknames herself already. We traded them back and forth over the holiday, a sort of call and repeat. Tonight I got to hear it again over the phone. She sounded so happy.

Leaving home was difficult, and I'm having a hard time being back. It's hard to be away from my family, and I wish I could still be home with them all. This time of year makes me miss them all the more, and this year, more than ever, I realize just how thankful I am for them all.

I didn't make this cake for Thanksgiving. I made a pear and almond tart instead that will soon be making an appearance here. This cake is one everyone should have in their repertoire. Calling it a cake isn't totally accurate. It's a bit of a cross between a cake and a tart, maybe even a bread depending on what you cook it in. It's tart, just a bit sweet, spectacular right out of the oven and it tastes like the holidays. I've even had it requested as a birthday cake before. It's one of my favorites, and it's so easy. Just toss all the ingredients together and throw it in the oven. I like to use fresh cranberries, but frozen will work nicely.

Cranberry Pecan Cake

1 cup toasted pecans, chopped
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter melted, with a bit extra for the pan
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp almond extract
1 cup flour
2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)
raw sugar for topping
zest of 1 orange
whipped cream

Pre-heat oven to 375. Combine pecans through the cranberries in a large mixing bowl. Brush pan with butter. Scoop mixture into a pie pan, tart pan or small baking dish. Bake 30-40 minutes, until knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool. Top with orange zest and raw sugar. Serve with whipped cream. Also delicious for breakfast.


  1. I have a bunch of cranberries sitting in the fridge right now...perfect for this yummy cake:)

  2. I am making this again tonight - it's one of our new favorites!

  3. this was the best birthday cake ever last year!

  4. matt requested this dessert again...and I finally have real almond extract this time too!