I am not sure what prompted me to make this recipe tonight and share it -- it could have been my sheer love for this delicious cake that I made for Thanksgiving, it could have been all those prepared bloggy posts sitting on my laptop somewhere in middle America where I can't get to them... or it could have been a subconscious desire to sabotage any and all healthy eating plans with lots of butter and sugar.
If I can't look good in skinny jeans, why should you? That's what I say.
But about this coffee cake... peeps, it's good. Good enough to possibly knock my Grandma's cardamom bread wreath off its hallowed Christmas morning breakfast pedestal -- nothing's set in stone right now, but I feel like this recipe and the cardamom bread (which I've had every Christmas morning for just about, oh... my whole life) are on logs in a swimming pool wearing helmets and holding foam-tipped paddles a la American Gladiators. We shall see who prevails.
It starts with butter and sugar, which are sort of like the most important things in the world.
Sort of. Right?
Melt those together and bring to a boil.
Then just pour this caramelesque nectar of heaven into a prepared springform pan (I lined mine with parchment paper) and sprinkle with fresh cranberries and pecans. (Or walnuts. Or whatever makes you happy.)
Then make your basic coffee cake batter -- cream butter and sugar, blah blah blah, dry ingredients, sour cream (I used light 'cause I'm health conscious like that, can't you tell?), and sha-ZAM!
Spread the batter evenly across the pan, bake it up, pull it out of the oven, and let it rest for a bit while you stare at it and bite your nails anxiously.
Turn it out onto a cake stand, a plate, or your lap. Weep with joy.
And you're going to have to cut a piece immediately because it's best served warm, even if it's 9:00 at night.
Quality control is a very, very important part of any process.
It's really, really good. Not to get all Giada de Laurentiis-ish with my descriptives or anything, but the tartness of the cranberries mixed with that caramelly sauce is to. die. for.
Cranberry Upside-Down Coffee Cake (from Allrecipes)
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 1/4 cups cranberries
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sour cream (I used light and the world didn't come crashing down around me)
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
To make topping, combine brown sugar and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, remove from heat and pour into a prepared 9-inch springform pan. Sprinkle cranberries and nuts on top.
To make cake batter, cream softened butter with granulated sugar until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the vanilla and mix well.
In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the sour cream to the butter mixture until everything is combined. Pour prepared batter over cranberries in pan and bake in a 350°F oven for 50 minutes.
Let the coffee cake rest for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto serving platter. This cake is best served warm.
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