Spring is in the air.... well, at least according to the calender it is. Spring makes me think of fresh things like tulips, lemons, sweet tea and sunshine. This recipe is the perfect match for the oncoming of spring. It blends the fresh tastes of spring with the warmth of what winter has left us. I serve this as a dessert or as a special treat when some is coming for coffee.
4 Large Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
2 tsp Lemon Zest
1 Cup Butter - Soft
2 cups Sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 Cups Flour
2 Cups Cranberries *
1/4 Cup lemon Juice **
1/4 Orange Juice ***
Preheat oven to 325F. In a bowl, mix together egg, vanilla and zests. In a mixing bowl, beat butter until smooth; slowly add 1 1/4 cups of the sugar and the salt. Once mixed, add the egg mixture until even. Add flour slowly, reduce speed to low and beat for 3-5 minutes. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray (or grease with butter), pour mixture into the pan and bake for 60-70 minutes; start checking at 60 minutes with the "toothpick trick".
In a sauce pan over medium heat add lemon juice, orange juice, remaining sugar and cranberries. Simmer for 5 minutes until cranberries have burst. Place a strainer in a bowl and pour the sauce into the strainer allowing the liquid to empty in the bowl, press the cranberry mixture to get out all the "goodness". Pour sauce over each slice at serving time.
* I often have fresh cranberries in my freezer; however frozen cranberries work just as well.
**Use the juice of the lemon that was zested for the cake and top up with lemon juice if needed.
***Juice an orange, however pre-done o.j. is great too!