orange cranberry pound cake

I’ve noticed that a hot shower feels 100x better than normal when I come inside after a cold and sweaty run, a bag of pretzel sticks tastes amazing when I’m ravenously hungry, and my bed is the most comfortable place in the world after a busy day.  

Actually the last one’s always true… no matter what I did that day.

 What I am trying to say is, contrast makes everything more awesome. 

This adorable pound cake plays upon this awesome concept of contrast.  Sure, a sweet vanilla pound cake is always yummy — but it can get a little boring after the third bite.  This pound cake is the perfect yin-yang balance of tart, zesty, and sweet. (i.e. not boring)

This cake never gets boring because it totally nails the “contrasty” thing.  Fresh cranberries are super tart.  Oranges are fresh and citrusy.  Pound cake is rich and sweet.  Mingle all of these friends together and you have the perfect, totally-not-boring, pound cake.  Pound cake perfection.

This is a great counter-top cake.  You know, the kind of cake to just put on the counter top looking all pretty, and as people walk in and out of the house — mom, dad, the dog walker etc., the cake slowly gets nibbled away.   

And when the glaze hardens and gets all nice and crackly…  Ugh.  I just wanna pour it on everything. 

glaaaaaaaaze

With love,
Erica

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup vanilla yogurt/plain yogurt/or sour cream
1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
3 eggs
zest of one large orange
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup frozen cranberries
1/3 cup orange juice

For the glaze:

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice

Preheat
the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease a loaf pan.  

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a larger
bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, orange zest, and
vanilla. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. With
a rubber spatula, fold the vegetable oil into the batter.  Fold in the cranberries. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake
for about 50 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean.

While the cake is in the oven, cook the 1/3 cup orange juice
and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and
the mixture is clear. Set aside.

When the cake is done, allow it
to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.  While the cake is still warm, pour the orange-sugar
mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool.

Once cool, carefully remove from the pan.  For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake. 

© Cannella Vita. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission/linking back to Cannella Vita. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.

the perfect lunch (lox and rye and brussel sprouts!)

The perfect lunch is different for everyone.  Some may fall head over heels for a big, juicy cheeseburger and fries.  Others might go crazy for a kale and quinoa salad.

look at those grill marks!!!

For me, the perfect lunch is dark, crusty bread, thinly sliced lox, a big smear of cream cheese, and a few leaves of spinach for color.  I (generously) butter the bread and it gets all crispy and succulent in the panini press.   Heaven.

On the side, I love to have some veggies.  But not just any old veggies — my famous candied Brussels sprouts.  Some of my friends who normally would never touch a vegetable with a hundred yard stick fell head over heels for these Brussels sprouts.  It’s true, and mildly creepy — almost like those Hidden Valley Ranch commercials where the kids choose cauliflower over popcorn.  These sprouts are mind-bogglingly addictive, in a totally good-for-you way. 

What’s your idea of the perfect lunch?
With love,
Erica

Erica’s Famous Candied Brussels Sprouts

Ingredients
2 cups Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/4 cup dried cranberries
salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add Brussels sprouts.  Sprinkle with brown sugar.  Cook until outsides are lightly brown and caramelized (3-5 minutes). Add cranberries and salt and pepper to taste.

© Cannella Vita. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission/linking back to Cannella Vita. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.