19 Nov Cranberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake
Did everybody have a good weekend? I know it’s Tuesday and I’m a little late, but hey – I care!
I went to my first Longhorn Football game of the season on Saturday! I was SO PUMPED to go. Unfortunately the boys didn’t show up nearly as pumped as I did. Even though we had fabulous seats and I screamed encouragement at the top of my lungs, it ended up being a pretty brutal game. Maybe next season, boys.
I was so pooped after the game (and suffering from my cleanse karma headache) that I spent the rest of my evening sitting on my couch watching pirated Season 4 Downton Abbey episodes. (For those of you who aren’t fans, Season 4 is the new season that is currently only airing in the UK and does not premiere in the US until January.) I could tell you where I got them but then I’d have to…well, you know how that goes.
I only have the first 3 episodes so I assure you it’s going to result in more torture than good. I’m just going to finish them in like, well let’s be real I’m going to finish them tonight, and then go through multiple phases of withdrawal while waiting for the rest of the country to catch up. Why do the Brits get to watch it first, anyway?
Speaking of football, remember how I complained that I was going to tailgate but couldn’t drink because I’m on a cleanse? True confessions, I caved. It was just too much to handle watching everybody scarf down bbq brisket tacos, drenched in smokey bbq sauce and topped with pickles and onions, chased down by ice cold beer. Then repeat. I couldn’t take it any longer! So I had a vodka soda. At least vodka doesn’t have any carbs, right? I half expected the cleanse gods to strike me down, or at least to feel some serious guilt. But nothing. I thoroughly enjoyed my little forbidden buzz.
Until I got home and had a splitting headache the rest of the night. Lesson learned. Cleanse karma exists.
I slept in on Sunday (so nice!) and then spent the rest of the day baking. I have cranberries up to my ears. I think I was being a little over ambitious when I bought the 5lb bag. I’ve baked two fresh cranberry desserts and I’m not even half way through. Sooo, I hope you guys like fresh cranberries because I’m not one to waste. Plus they’re so pretty! I’ve had a lot of fun photographing the little crimson jewels. Why stop now?
This rustic Cranberry Cornmeal Skillet Cake reminds me of a dessert that the pilgrims may have actually made for Thanksgiving dinner, way back in 1621 (I had to wikipedia that). The cornmeal gives it a hearty yet tender crumb that adds that creamy sweetness that is unique to good old, all-American corn. Fitting for a Thanksgiving dessert, don’t ya think? The cranberries become extra juicy as they cook, resulting in warm, tart bursts of flavor, perfectly complemented by the crunch of the caramelized brown sugar topping.
While I’m confessing – yes, I cleanse cheated and had a piece of this too. I’m a cleanse failure. But it was totally worth it. This cake is THAT GOOD. Try it for Thanksgiving, I promise you won’t be sorry! More cranberries later this week!
Recipe notes: I used a 10.25 inch cast iron skillet but you can use anywhere from a 10 inch to an 11 inch. If you do use a larger skillet reduce the cooking time approximately 5 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs attached. Cast iron skillets hold heat very well so the cake will continue to bake after you remove it from the oven.
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 cup fine cornmeal
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sour cream (or full fat yogurt)
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- Center an oven rack and preheat the oven to 350.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a bowl. Add the cornmeal and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Melt butter in your iron skillet and swirl to coat the bottom and sides.
- Pour the melted butter into a bowl and whisk in honey, eggs and sour cream (or yogurt).
- Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Fold in half of the cranberries.
- Pour batter into the skillet and spread into an even layer. Distribute the remaining cranberries evenly over the top of the batter and sprinkle with brown sugar.
- Place the skillet in the middle of the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs attached.
Recipe adapted from Vintage Cakes by Julie Richardson (one of my favorite baking books!)