Tuesday, December 8

RECIPE | Cranberry Orange Christmas Bread


 Looking for a delicious sweet bread recipe this holiday season?
This Cranberry Orange Bread may be just what you've been searching for.
The fresh citrus zest in the glaze is soooo yummy and fresh cranberries are in season right now so you may as well put them to good use. *wink*

Not only is it a delicious bread, it's pretty + festive making this the perfect treat to make for your family for Christmas morning or as a food gift idea for teachers, neighbors, friends + co-workers or even your mail delivery person.

I made mini loaves for the Christmas Brunch table I created for the current issue of Romantic Homes Magazine. I wrapped each mini loaf in plastic wrap after the glaze dried and then "hugged" each loaf with a white paper doily by tying a piece of ivory lace around the loaf to secure. Add some faux holly berries as a cute accent. Done + Darling! 

This idea doubles as a cute place setting as well as a take-home treat if you happen to be hosting a Christmas Brunch this year.


I also made a medium sized Cranberry Orange Loaf for the brunch table to allow guests to sample the bread yet save their mini loaf at their place setting to enjoy at home later.


It's such a pretty and festive sweet bread with the contrast of the cranberries baked inside! Don't you agree? You've got to try this!!

CRANBERRY-ORANGE CHRISTMAS BREAD
Makes 1 medium loaf or 9 petite loaves

INGREDIENTS
Bread Loaf
1+1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup granulated sugar
Zest of 1 large orange (save 1 tsp for glaze)
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 TBSP fresh orange juice (from tested orange)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup fresh, chopped cranberries (or 1/2 cup of dried cranberries)

Orange Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
1+1/2 TBSP fresh orange juice (from tested orange)
1 tsp fresh orange zest

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray loaf pan(s) with cooking spray. Set aside.

2. Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder in a large bowl.

3. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and fresh orange zest. Use your fingers to rub the two together until the sugar becomes fragrant and turns a very pale shade of orange. (this is my favorite part! It's so fragrant and smells soooo good!) Whisk the sugar mixture into the flour mixture. Set aside.

4. In a medium bowl, add the wet ingredients. Whisk together until combined thoroughly.

5. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined. Fold in the cranberries using a spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan(s).

6. Bake according to the pan size you've selected (see below) or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out clean. If necessary, loosely drape a piece of tin foil over the loaf pan to prevent over-browning during the last 10 minutes of baking.

7. Remove the bread from the the oven and place it on a cooling rack. Allow it to cool for 10-15 minutes in the pan. Loosen the bread from the sides of the cavity using a knife or small spatula. Carefully lift and remove the loaf from the pan. Cool it completely on the wire rack.

8. Prepare the orange glaze while the loaf cools. Combine the powdered sugar, orange juice and orange zest in a small bowl. Whisk these ingredients together until smooth. Add more orange juice if necessary until an icing consistency is reached. Use a spoon or small whisk to drizzle the glaze onto the cooled bread. Slice and serve.

If packaging for food gifts, allow the glaze to dry and harden (20-30 minutes) before wrapping in plastic wrap.

Bread can be stored for two to three days in an airtight container or in plastic wrap.

Makes
(A) 1 - 8 1/2 x 4 1/2" loaf pan (I used something similar to this Wilton Medium Loaf Pan)
(B) or 1 - 9 cavity 2 1/2" x 3 3/8" petite loaf pan (I used this Wilton 9-cavity petite loaf pan)

Baking Times (may vary depending on finish of loaf pans)
(A) - 70-75 minutes
(B) - 20-30 minute

Looking for other holiday recipes?
You might want to try these Gingerbread Cinnamon Rolls from a few years ago?
Or these Mason Jar Lid Cookies!

Speaking of cookies...remember this Cookie Exchange Party Idea?
If you are prepping to host your own Cookie Exchange, I've been pinning some fun ideas to my Cookie Exchange Pinterest Board.

KEEPING IT REAL
With the busyness of life, I did a terrible job at spreading the word about the fact that I was in two back-to-back issues of Romantic Homes Magazine. My Hot Chocolate Bar was featured in the November issue of Romantic Homes and then I styled a Christmas Brunch for their December issue which is currently on newsstands. I'll be sharing the entire brunch here on the blog this week so stay tuned!

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