I spotted this recipe on the LA Times website a while back and quickly bookmarked it. I knew when I got around to making it, that I would love it. And I did. And so did the rest of my family. My H described it as “it has that great sweet/tart thing going on”. Yes it does. And then he had a second piece!
This a light cake but with a bit of added crunch and flavour from the cornmeal. This is definitely not dense like cornbread, but it does have that familiar, comforting flavour. And with the cranberries and orange, it’s a thoroughly delightful cake.
I think this cake would be perfectly at home in a number of settings – on a brunch table or for a special breakfast. For afternoon tea or lunch. After dinner, with a scoop of ice cream.
As mentioned below, you can easily adapt this cake for Spring or Summer, by using blueberries and lemon zest instead of cranberries and orange.
Recipe: Cranberry Orange Cornmeal Cake
Summary: I love this cake with orange and cranberry but if you’d like to change it up, try this lovely dessert with blueberries and lemon zest, instead!
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla
- 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) butter
- 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar, *divided
- 2 1/4 teaspoons salt
- Zest of 1 orange
- 2 cups ricotta cheese
- 2 1/2 cups cranberries, *divided
- Preheat oven to 375° F, with rack in centre of oven. Grease a 9-inch or 10-inch round by 3-inch high cake pan or spring-form pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and baking soda. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, oil and vanilla. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter, 1 1/2 cups sugar, salt and zest. Mix just until thoroughly combined; do not over mix.
- With the mixer running, slowly add the egg mixture into the butter just until combined.
- With the mixer on low speed, add one-half of the flour mixture to the batter and quickly mix for 5 seconds. Turn off the mixer and add the rest of the flour, the ricotta and one-half of the cranberries. Mix the remaining cranberries into the batter over low speed just until combined, being careful not to over mix.
- Gently pour the batter into the cake pan and smooth the top. Scatter the remaining cranberries over the top of the cake, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar.
- Bake the cake until a toothpick/skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Place a loose piece of foil over the top of the cake if it starts to darken too much. Cool the cake on a wire rack before removing it from the pan.
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 1 hour 15 min
Total time: 1 hour 35 min
Number of servings (yield): 12