Moist, sweet-tangy, buttery, nutty – hints of deliciousness in every bite – Cranberry Praline Bread
So I still had some fresh cranberries left-over from the holiday season that’s begging to be used. I didn’t fancy making cookies nor cooking extra cranberry sauce. Then an idea struck me when I saw my Apple Praline Bread. Why not try the same recipe for Apples but use Cranberry instead? I know I had to make some adjustments as the cranberries are tart and not as sweet as the apples but with some minor tweaking the result was a truly moist and scrumptious bread, I dare say, as good as the Apple version! From now on this is how I will be making Cranberry Bread! Why haven’t I thought of this earlier when there were more Cranberries. Oh well, better late than never!
Since, cranberries are sharper in flavor (tangy and tart) compared to the sweet apples, I had to add a little more sugar to the recipe. You still have a good contrast between the sweet and tart so it’s not overly sweet at all, in fact the addition of cranberries gave it that extra tang which made the bread so delicious. I wasn’t sure if sour cream on its own would be enough to moisten the bread so initially I added a little oil to the batter – it came out really moist and flavorful. The next time, I omitted the oil and just used sour cream – it still came out well, moist and not dry at all. So feel free to add or omit the oil as you please. With regard to the praline topping – you can use the maximum amount (1/2 cup each of butter and sugar – see photo above) and the bread still won’t be overly sweet – at least for me, but if you want a lower fat version – opt for the 1/4 cup – it will still be good, just a little less sweeter. This bread is so versatile that way and that’s why I love it! Enjoy, if you still have some left-over cranberries!
1 cup sour cream
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup white sugar
3 Tablespoons Butter or 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 cup fresh or frozen Cranberries, coarsely chopped
1 cup nuts (walnut or pecan or a combo), divided
For the praline sauce:
¼ to 1/2 cup brown sugar and ¼ to 1/2 cup butter
*I have tried both with and without the extra vegetable oil. The one without was still moist and has a stronger cranberry taste. The one with oil has has extra moisture but less pronounced cranberry taste. They both taste good either way so follow your instinct. The one with extra butter tasted yummy, too!
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Lightly grease or butter a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan (preferably a light colored one). Set aside.
Combine the flour, leavening agents, ground cinnamon and salt in a bowl. Stir in the chopped cranberries.
Using an electric mixer, beat together the sour cream, sugar, eggs, oil (if using) and vanilla on low speed for a couple of minutes until well blended.
Stop the mixer and then add in the flour mixture. Stir to combine.
Fold in half the nuts into the batter.
Transfer the batter into the greased loaf pan.
Sprinkle the rest of the nuts on top and then press them lightly into the batter. Bake for about 60-70 or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. If it’s browning a little too much on the top, cover with a tent foil and continue to bake until fully cooked.
Cool in the loaf pan for about 10-15 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the praline sauce:
In a small sauce pan, place the butter and brown sugar. Using medium heat, bring to a boil. Lower the heat and then simmer lightly for about one minute, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens. Remove from heat and then drizzle over the bread. Cool completely. You can also opt to let the bread completely cool first and then drizzle the praline topping afterwards. That’s what I did.
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