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Deep Dark Gingerbread

January 7, 2011

In case you didn’t notice (or you live in some place with obscenely nice weather), it has been raining A LOT this winter.  (My apologies to anyone reading this who is currently snowed in or worse, lots of rain is extreme weather for us here in Northern California.) In fact, it rained nearly every day of our Winter Break from school.  At first it was nice.  We read books, built forts, danced, and suited up in rain gear for wet adventures through the woods.  By the end of the second week though, the mere thought of constructing another LEGO plaything made me ill.  Luckily my children love to eat even more than I do and given the opportunity they love to cook as well.

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Easy Cranberry Bread

December 23, 2010


How is it that cranberries have become the icon of the holidays?  Is it their crimson color or their relative scarcity throughout the rest of the year?  Whatever it is, they play a special role during this season.  For some reason, I have been craving cranberry bread.  When I set out to find a recipe, I was surprised that there are very few out there.  The recipe that follows is generously adapted from one posted on Everyday Food (that received mediocre reviews).

I was craving a bread that would celebrate cranberries rich color and tart flavor without distractions from nuts, citrus, etc.  To boost the flavor, I swapped out the whole milk for buttermilk.  The cranberries are chopped and sprinkled with sugar before folding them into the dough.  This sweetens the berries and prevents an overwhelmingly sour pop of cranberry when you bite into a piece.  The result is a quick bread that is perfect for breakfast or brunch during the holidays or any time of year. (Now is the best time to buy cranberries.  They freeze well!)

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