Cranberry Orange & Pecan Coffee Cake

Happy Thanksgiving!

This is one of my favorite holidays. Probably because of the cooking involved…and the baking. I spend all Thanksgiving in the kitchen with loved ones as dish after dish comes out of the oven and stovetop. Of course, that means snacking along the way as well!

This coffee cake is a new addition to the Thanksgiving spread this year. It’s full of fresh cranberries and fresh orange juice and zest. It just looks festive and with a streusel topping how can it not be?

Mmm mmm good. I can’t wait to dive into this after dinner with a good cup of coffee. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Cranberry Orange & Pecan Coffee Cake

Adapted from joythebaker
Makes 1 9×5 inch loaf

For the Cake
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature and cut into cubes
1 egg
3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh cranberries
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and grease with butter. Set aside. Make sure to leave some overhang all around the pan for easy cake extraction.

In a bowl, mix together your flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Time to get messy and use your fingers! Using your hands, incorporate the butter into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs.

In another bowl, mix together your egg, orange juice, zest, and extract. I’d recommend recruiting helpers to squeeze your juice and zest your zest. It keeps everyone busy in the kitchen!

Case in point, my brother and husband helping to squeeze and zest.

Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients. Stir just until incorporated and fold in the cranberries and pecans into the batter. Pour this thick, luscious batter into your prepared loaf pan and set aside while preparing the crumb topping.

For the pecan streusel topping: 
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into little cubes
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Simply combine all of your ingredients until your butter is well incorporated and your mixture looks once again like bread crumbs. Sprinkle all over your batter!

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour 20 minutes – 1 hour 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean or the cake bounces back at you when pressed on. Let cool in the pan for 15-20 minutes and simply use your overhang parchment to lift out of the pan and let your cake cool completely.

Optional glaze:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tablespoon of milk

Simply mix and drizzle over your streusel topping.

Enjoy and Happy Thanksgiving!

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Banana Cinnamon Rolls

Every time I have bananas that get ripe before I can get around to eating them, I mash them and freeze them to make banana bread later. I’ve been looking for a different take on traditional banana bread, and thought cinnamon rolls made with bananas in the dough would be an excellent choice! These smelled great baking in the oven! Next time I think I’ll add some walnuts or pecans to the filling.

Inspired by this.

Banana rolls:

½ cup milk (warmed to about 100 degrees F)
¼ cup sugar
2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (one packet)
3 medium overripe bananas, mashed (about ¾ cup)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large egg
½ teaspoon salt
3 ½ cups bread flour (you can also use bread flour, all-purpose, and even about ½ cup whole wheat)

Filling:
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoons cinnamon
¼ teaspoon each of cloves, allspice, and ginger
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cream cheese frosting:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2  cups powdered sugar (approximate)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

In a 2-cup measuring glass, combine the milk, sugar and yeast. Set aside for about 10 minutes to proof.

To the yeast mixture, add the bananas, butter, oil, and egg.

In a large bowl combine 2 cups of the flour and salt. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients. Stir with a spoon until combined. Continue adding flour until it forms a dough that is not sticky.

Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 10 minutes; a smooth dough will form. Place the dough ball into a lightly floured bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm place for an hour or two, or until it has doubled in size.

Punch the dough down. On a floured surface, roll the dough to about an 18 x 24 inches rectangle (doesn’t have to be perfect).

For the filling, mix together the sugar and spices.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Brush the dough rectangle with the melted butter. Sprinkle evenly with the sugar mixture.

Roll up the dough along the long edge. Use a sharp knife to cut the log into 12 even pieces.

Place the rolls into a greased 9×13 pan. Allow to rise for about 15 minutes or until they start to get puffy.

Bake in your preheated 350 F oven for 22 to 24 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before frosting.

For frosting, combine all ingredients in a medium bowl with a fork (or hand mixer). Spread evenly on the rolls.

Rolling out the dough…you can see the specks of banana seeds!

Brush with butter and then sprinkle with the spiced sugar.

Roll up the dough, starting with the long end.

Slice the log into 12 buns!

All lined up and ready to go!

Allow them to rise and get puffy before baking.

Fresh out of the oven!

Mmm smells like banana bread.

Frost them after they’ve cooled a bit.

Break one off and enjoy!

Mini Pumpkin Spice Latte Bundt Cakes

I absolutely love pumpkin baked goods! I’ve been wanting to use my adorable mini bundt pan, and my favorite pumpkin cupcake recipe seemed like it might be the perfect choice. You could do a maple or cinnamon frosting, but I thought the latte frosting was a very clever idea!

Idea from here.

For the cupcakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 to ¼ teaspoon ginger, allspice, cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs

For the latte frosting
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
About a tablespoon brewed coffee, hot

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously spray a 6 cup mini bundt pan with cooking spray and sprinkle with flour. Alternatively, line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with paper liners.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt.

In a large glass measuring cup or another bowl, combine the pumpkin, sugars, vegetable oil and eggs.

Pour wet mixture over dry ingredients and stir just until moist.

Scoop the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Remove cakes from pan and cool on a wire rack.

Mix together the frosting ingredients to form a nice drizzling consistency and apply to cakes.

Yum fresh from the oven!
The view from 10,000 feet.

Pre-frosting…

Post frosting!

So pretty all in a row…Enjoy!