Aren’t cranberries great? And snowflakes too, actual snow flakes, not the ones that get thrown around by idiots on twitter who think they’re being funny. Cranberries may not be as sweet as many other fruits or berries, but they still make a wonderful pie. It’s a particularly tart one, even with all the sugar but, covered in snowflake pastry and served up with a dollop of cream, you’ve got a perfect dessert for sharing at a festive dinner party.
Cranberry Pie will be my last recipe of the year, and I’m hoping to get back at things properly again in the new year. It’s been great to get back putting up content regularly again, and with some pretty big news coming up I’m hoping things will be rejuvenated and I’ll be posting recipes more often. So watch this space. In the meantime, I hope everyone has an absolutely wonderful Christmas and New Year, and that their 2018’s have been bearable.
What’s the best way to kick off Christmas morning? It definitely involves a brew, maybe a stocking and probably some form of bucks fizz. But if you want to kick it up a notch, why not serve up cinnamon buns for breakfast? Maple cranberry cinnamon buns sprinkled with chopped pistachios and drizzled with an orange glaze are the perfect way to make Christmas morning even more indulgent, especially as most of the hard work can be done the day before, so they’re ready to just stick in the oven first thing.
This is a combination of a couple of my older recipes, it takes the maple cranberries from my Christmas pancake recipe, and the overnight cinnamon buns I made last year, then it adds an orange wash, pistachios and a glaze. The cinnamon buns are delightfully light, especially when they’re fresh, perfect to pull apart. Arranged like a Christmas tree they’re also very visually impressive, ready for hungry and excited people to devour first thing in the morning.
Soft cinnamon buns filled with maple cranberries, drizzled with orange glaze and dusted with pistachios.
For the Dough
235mlwarm milknot hot
½tbspfast acting dried yeast
385g+ 2-4tbsp all-purpose flourdivided
1large eggroom temperature
For the filling
For the toppings
Zestof one orange
In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle the yeast into the flour. Leave for a few minutes then whisk in 65g of the flour and 2tbsp sugar until combined. Cover with cling film and leave to rise at room temperature for 35-40minutes so it puffs up.
Whisk in the remaining sugar, egg, melted butter and salt.
Using a dough hook attachment, set to low and add in 320g of flour, 60g at a time, making sure the flour has incorporated well after each addition. Add flour a tablespoon at a time after this until the dough is no longer sticking to a fingertip. Set to knead for 10 minutes. It should be coming away from the sides of the bowl at the end.
Cover and allow to rise at room temperature for 2 hours (1 hour in an oven set to 35°C), until it’s doubled in size.
In a small saucepan heat the water with the cranberries for a few minutes until the water starts cooking off. Add the maple and cinnamon and cook over a low heat until it starts turning syrupy.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out the dough into a 17″x10″ rectangle. Spread the softened butter over the top.
Whisk together the cinnamon and sugar, sprinkle the buttered dough generously all over. You’ll use all of it. Then, sprinkle over the prepared cranberries as evenly as you can.
Roll tightly, away from you along one of the long edges, to make a long a log.
Pinch the very ends together slightly, then cut them off to neaten. Divide into 12 even cinnamon rolls.
Place them cut side down in a prepared tin, spacing evenly to allow some space to rise, or else in a 2, 4, 3, 2, 1 formation to form a Christmas tree.
Cover with cling film and place in the fridge for at least 7 hours. Overnight is preferable.
Remove from the fridge an hour before you want to cook them so they can return to room temperature. They’ll be puffy.
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C(160°C fan assisted).
Remove the cling film, transfer to the center of the pre-heated oven and bake for 22-24 minutes, until the tops have gone golden.
While they are baking, combine the caster sugar in a small pan with the water and orange zest, whisking until the sugar has dissolved. Heat until it just starts to boil.
As soon as you’ve removed the cinnamon buns from the oven, brush them generously with the sugar syrup.
Leave to cool for a few more minutes before sprinkling with the pistachios.
Whisk the orange juice with the icing sugar until you’ve got a thick icing that should dribble off the whisk when lifted. Transfer to a piping bag and pipe over the buns in whatever pattern you desire.
It’s December 1st, and we all know what that means, right? It’s CHRISTMAS. You’ll get wall to wall festive recipes from now on, with added Reuben: Now I’ve got that out of my system it’s time to talk about more serious matters, like breakfast food. Or in this case, pancakes. In fact, wait a minute, how about CHRISTMAS PANCAKES? It’s like two of the best things in life put together. Breakfast food and Christmas. What isn’t to like? I mean, matcha isn’t very Christmassy, but any excuse to crack out the green stuff (you saw my Halloween cookies, right?) and what isn’t festive about the combo of green and red? Read more
IT IS CHRISTMAS NEXT WEEK. GET EXCITED. Stick on your favourite Christmas song, get the wine mulling and tuck in to some form of festive sandwich from your local convenience store. Better yet, make one a Cranberry and Orange Loaf. I love this recipe and make it every year, several times, yet somehow I managed to not write it up last year. I think it was because it’s something I usually make to gift to people or to take places. Which means I never get a chance to actually photograph it.
Speaking of gifts. This is actually the prize from my Mystery Cake Box giveaway I ran in November. So congratulations to the winners and I hope you enjoy the cakes. I may well be sending a few of these in the direction of some friends if I’ve got time this week so keep an eye on the postie.
It contains nuts, usually walnuts but I’ve made it with pine nuts for a nut allergy fearing mother before now. The crunch that gets added from the nuts and the extra flavour is a great addition. I have tried a recipe that replaces the Orange with Orange Juice and I have to say, it was much too orangey for me and a bit too sharp. This is a much preferred method and I thought I’d lost the recipe a couple of years ago but managed to dig it back up. It’s one of the few that I have on a scrap of paper that has somehow survived a few years.
It’s something I usually bake in batches of 2-3 as well. Which you will see below as this recipe makes 2 loaves. The only really time consuming bit is halving all of the Cranberries.
Preheat the oven to 175°C (155°C fan assisted) and grease/line two loaf tins.
Sift the dry ingredients into the bowl of your mixer, add the zest.
In a measuring jug combine the butter, juice and eggs. Add enough water to the jug to make it about 350ml.
Pour into the dry and mix at a medium to low speed until just combined.
Add in the cranberries and walnuts and mix again.
It makes a very thick gloopy batter. Divide this up evenly between the two prepared tins and place on the middle shelf of the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf will come out clean.
Remove from the oven and allow to set in the tin for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool