Easy and festive, this Snow Capped Cranberry Bundt Cake is light and moist, filled with cranberries and warm spices.
A funny thing happened on the way to a simple cranberry bundt cake. This past weekend I discovered a bag of fresh cranberries in the fridge, so I decided I'd bake up a simple cranberry bundt cake. And while I was baking, the snow started. And it kept snowing. And by the time my cranberry bundt cake came out of the oven, it was a bit of a Winter wonderland out my window.
So what was originally going to be a simple cranberry bundt cake with maybe a dusting of icing sugar, turned into this snow capped version! It seemed fitting for the day :)
And while it's definitely more festive, it was honestly not a lot of extra work. Simply mix up a bit of icing once the cake has cooled, spoon it on top then spread here and there with a spoon. Add a few cranberries and a sprig of rosemary and a final dusting of icing sugar, for an easy, festive and delicious cake.
And speaking of the cake, the tart, fresh cranberries combine with a lovely light cake, with a generous splash of vanilla and a sprinkling of warm, Winter spices. Lightly sweet, this cake would be at home on the Brunch table or for a dessert.
Cook's Notes for Snow Capped Cranberry Bundt Cake
When it comes to the cranberries for this cake, you can use fresh or frozen. If you can't get your hands on either of those, dried cranberries would work, though it would result in an overall sweeter cake.
Feel free to tweak the spicing in this cake to your tastes. I'm not a cardamom lover myself, but if you are, I think a pinch would be lovely in this cake. I went with cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, but allspice would work nicely, too. I feel like you don't want to add too much spice though, as it seems to work nicely as just warm background notes, rather than front and center. Your call though :)
The icing is essentially just a light buttercream (light on the butter) that is mixed to just a tad thinner than you would use to frost a cake. Spoon it in a ring on top, then use the back of a spoon to push it in "big drips" (or snow drifts :) over the edges a bit.
This cake sat on my counter not very well covered for several days and held its own really well. It would also freeze well if you wanted to make it ahead.
Snow Capped Cranberry Bundt Cake
For the cake:
- 4 eggs (separated)
- 1 3/4 cups white sugar
- 3 Tbsp vanilla
- 1 cup vegetable oil (or canola or other neutral cooking oil)
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ginger
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (tossed with 1 Tbsp flour)
For the icing:
- 1 1/2 cups icing sugar (plus more for dusting)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 Tbsp butter (softened)
- 2 Tbsp + milk
- Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 10-inch bundt pan and set aside.
- Beat egg whites until frothy (until they look like a bubble bath :). Add the sugar, egg yolks, oil and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and spices. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, alternating with the milk. Fold in the floured cranberries.
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated 350F oven for about 1 hour, or until a tester inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to mostly cool in the pan, before turning out onto a plate.
- For the icing: Once the cake is completely cooled, combine the icing ingredients with enough milk to make an icing just a tiny bit thinner than a regular cake icing. Spoon in a ring on the top of the cake then using the back of a spoon, push "drips" of icing over the edge of the cake here and there. If desired, place 4 or 5 fresh cranberries with a sprig of rosemary on top, then dust the entire cake with icing sugar.