Real bread! Fresh cranberries, almonds, orange zest and cardamom yeast dough, baked into the perfect crusty celebration loaf of bread.
I’m not sure why so many fabulous cooks are so skeptical about working with yeast dough. The yeast does all the work! Something wet, something dry and yeast to make it all rise and bake to perfection!
Go ahead, tell me you thought this was going to be yet another cake-like cranberry bread. Nothing wrong with that, except this is bread… puffed up tall, bake till it crunches, sliced beautifully for a sandwich or morning toast, kind-of bread.
I grew up making a variety of cranberry bread recipes from various recipes, the first recipe I probably found on the back of the bag of fresh cranberries. It called for baking powder and baking soda and was lovely, except, it is more of a muffin or a cake.
Midway through October, when autumn flavors become so pronounced, I got a hunger for a loaf of bread that was loaded with cranberries and nuts, but baked just like many of my other yeast breads. So, I created this recipe and it is spectacular!
Almonds and Almond Flour
Do you know what almond flour is? It’s ground almonds, ground to a powdery flour. Same is true of oat flour, and any other nut or grain flour.
Adding almond flour to many of the recipes we cook with that call for flour, change the texture and flavor in a way that will make you never go back to using just all-purpose flour.
How To Use Almond Flour In Baking
For sure, all-purpose flour has all the gluten needed to make cakes and breads rise tall, and makes cookies and pie crusts stick together. But let’s face it, all-purpose flour really has no taste.
If a recipe calls for 2 cups of flour, try eliminating 1/2 cup in place of almond flour, or other nut flours. The texture is a little more rustic and the flavor… well, it actually has flavor!
If there is only one kitchen toy I could afford myself to have, it would be and always will be a food processor! A good quality, powerful, generous size bowl food processor costs less than one hundred dollars and lasts for years.
True story. I recently filmed in a new food series that will air in summer of 2022. The trick to being successful, was to make the studio kitchen, I would cook in for a season of shows, feel and function like my own.
The food processors we were given to use, became the demise of several of us, causing many swear words to be bleeped out before release. One evening, before an important food preparation, after the studio food processor and I became enemies, I decided to go out from the studio (with permission, of course), and buy my own, the night before a huge cook. What was I thinking!
The food processor I purchased was a brand name, cost under eighty dollars, medium size, but I wanted something I could rely on for this important meal I was to prepare. I splurged, I named her Mabel, brought her into the studio kitchen the next morning, introduced her to the judges… she pulled through for me and when the show was finished filming, I brought Mabel home with me!
Good tools are great aids, cheap tools could possible create a new dictionary of swear words we’ve yet to use.
How To Make Cranberry Yeast Bread
First… that’s right, get out your food processor! Grind and puree just about everything. Crush the almonds. Then throw in the cranberries and puree. Toss in the sugar, orange zest and juice, an egg and some olive oil.
In a large bowl, proof the yeast. Proof? Simply put 1 tablespoon of yeast, 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1-2 tablespoons of warm water (115-118 degrees), into the bowl, let them wake up together, toss in the pureed mix, slowly stir in the flour and in minutes you have dough.
Dough, because it works so hard, just needs a nap. It needs to rest under a blanket for about an hour, then when it is wide awake and ready for show time, it gets reshaped and baked to perfection. Now, what is so hard about that!
If you were to have this cranberry yeast bread for a celebration breakfast, brunch or afternoon tea, I can’t think of anything more scrumptious to go on top than a schemer of mascarpone or butter and a spread of Homemade Cranberry Compote!
Cranberry compote is slightly tart, a little sweet and has all the beautiful spices to wake up the tastebuds: cinnamon, or ginger, cloves, orange rinds or even orange blossom water, a favored Mediterranean extract used more widely than vanilla.
Cranberry Compote is an easy mix to simmer and puree, and goes along side turkey dishes, on top of a baked brie which would be perfect to serve with Cranberry bread, or try adding a few chili peppers to Cranberry Compote and baste a pork loin, chicken wings or a duck breast with it and roast!
Plan to make this bread for the holiday season and before you know it, it will become a tradition you will make every year. Now, lets make this fabulous bread!
I would absolutely LOVE it if you sent me pics of your bread after you make it! xoxo
Other Cranberry Goodies
Fresh cranberries only come into season for a short time in the year and so I have made is a practice to buy many bags and freeze them for other recipes I love throughout the year. Here are just a few you may love as much as I do:
- Cranberry Compote – both sweet and savory with a kick of chilies
- Cranberry Orange Blossom Muffins – tart, floral and oh so healthy
- Mediterranean Cranberry Pie with Almond and Coconut Crust – gluten-free and quite exotic
- Fresh Cranberries
- Olive oil
- Orange juice and zest
- Food Processor
- Large mixing bowl
- Wooden spoon
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoons
- Basting brush
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
Best Cranberry and Almond Yeast Bread EverCourse: Bread Muffins u0026amp; CrackersCuisine: Mediterranean
Real bread! Fresh cranberries, almonds, orange and cardamom yeast dough, baked into the perfect crusty loaf of bread.
Fresh Cranberries – 2 cups
Almonds – 1 cup
Sugar – 1/2 cup
Yeast – 1 packet Quick Rise Instant yeast
Warm water – 2 tablespoons
Salt – 2 teaspoons
Egg – 1
Olive oil – 1/4 cup, more to oil bowl when rising
Milk – 1/4 cup
Orange zest and juice – 1/2 orange
Cardamom – 1 teaspoon
Flour – 4-5 cups, give or take
Egg wash – 1 egg mixed with 1 teaspoon water
- In a large mixing bowl, place the yeast, 1 tablespoon sugar and 2 tablespoons of warm water. Let it sit a few minutes while preparing the cranberries and almonds.
- In a food processor, crush the almonds and cranberries to a puree. Add the remaining sugar, milk, olive oil, egg, orange juice, salt, cardamom and zest. Pulse again to mix well.
- Pour the mixture from the food processor into the bowl with the yeast mixture. Stir.
- Slowly stir in the flour until it is too sticky to stir. Add more flour and begin to work the dough with your hands in a simple – fold-press-fold method – adding flour as needed until the dough is no longer sticky.
- Brush a little olive oil in a clean large bowl, transfer the dough to the bowl, cover and it let sit in a warm place (not hot), for an hour to 90 minutes until it doubles in size.
- Preheat oven to 400
- Press dough to deflate. Sprinkle a little flour on all sizes and shape the dough into a log, or shape you desire.
- Score the dough making shallow slits across with a sharp knife.
- Brush egg wash across the top. Let it sit 30 minutes as the oven heats up.
- Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown.