Bake Cranberries into Your Cake

These ruby gems deserve to be eaten more than once a year

By Ben Mims

Published on November 20, 2015

I’ve always felt sad for cranberries. Despite their ubiquity during the month of November, they’re always relegated to being a relish, chutney, or other saucy condiment, and for the most part only eaten one day of the year. As a stalwart lover of the cranberry’s bright, tart flavor, I’ve always wanted to move them into the spotlight and show off more of their nuances.

When sweetened with just enough sugar to tame their bitterness, cranberries take on a berry-like “red” taste that reminds me of summertime, when I’m tossing blackberries and raspberries into cake batters with abandon. To treat cranberries as the autumnal sisters of summer berries, I cook them down with red wine into a chunky sauce and then swirl it into a semolina cake, the delicate corn sweetness of the semolina playing off the bitter tartness of the cranberry, much like it does blackberries in summer. The ruby chunks pop against the clean, light yellow cake and show off the cranberry in such a beautiful way, you’ll never want to hide them in a sauce again.

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