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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Upside-Down Cranberry CoffeeCake

Yesterday I decided to try my hand at coffeecake for the first time. I found a good recipe from Cooking Light which yielded adequate results, with a few modifications:

1) I didn't have vanilla extract at home, so I substituted 1/2 tsp. maple extract instead. The cake had a nice undertone of maple and was a light golden colour as a result.
2) Whatever you do, make SURE that you have a pretty heavy layer of cranberries, dates, and nuts at the bottom. Otherwise, when you invert the cake, it will fall apart because the topping was not strong enough to create the upside-down effect. I know this because this is exactly what happened to me, and trust me, it was a mess. Luckily, this cake was only for my family, so I could afford to be lax on presentation as long as the product met taste standards (which it did). But if you plan on making this for a brunch or light dessert, then beware!
3) I also used fat-free milk instead of buttermilk, because I can never find fat-free buttermilk anywhere!

Cranberry Upside-Down Coffee Cake

Serve this buttery cake for a make-ahead brunch dish or at the end of a casual meal.

Cooking spray
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup fresh cranberries
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pitted dates
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon grated orange rind
1/2 cup butter, softened and divided
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 6 3/4 ounces)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. maple extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup fat-free milk

1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon butter, melted
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare cake, coat a 9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray; dust with 1 tablespoon flour. Combine cranberries, dates, walnuts, and rind in a bowl. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar, 2 tablespoons juice, and cinnamon; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour brown sugar mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle cranberry mixture evenly over brown sugar mixture.

Lightly spoon 1 1/2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Place granulated sugar and remaining 6 tablespoons butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add maple and egg; beat well. Add flour mixture and fat-free milk alternately to granulated sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Spoon batter over cranberry mixture.

Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes on a wire rack; run a knife around outside edges. Invert cake onto a plate; cool.

To prepare glaze, combine powdered sugar and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring until smooth. Drizzle over cake. Cut cake into squares.

Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 1 square)

CALORIES 312 (26% from fat); FAT 9.1g (sat 5.1g,mono 1g,poly 2.3g); IRON 1.2mg; CHOLESTEROL 39mg; CALCIUM 32mg; CARBOHYDRATE 55.7g; SODIUM 236mg; PROTEIN 3g; FIBER 1.4g

Cooking Light, DECEMBER 2006

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