Whipped Cranberry Butter
Wasn't always a traditionalist when it comes to Thanksgiving. Blame it on the past childhood Thanksgivings where three kinds of herring, chopped liver, and Japanese pickled radish were the stars of the show (covered to some extent here www.moveablefeast.me/blog/butternut-squash-latkes), instead of turkey.
For years I felt compelled to make Thanksgiving dishes that were "different." For instance, one year I made savory parmesan bread pudding, cider-brined turkey with star anise and cinnamon, whipped yams with chipotles, and Indian-spiced creamed spinach. On their own, these dishes were delicious. Delicious, but not Thanksgiving fare.
These days I cook most of the meal in a traditional way, but will still experiment and make one or two new recipes (can't help myself). Over the years, a few of them have stuck, like this whipped cranberry butter. The BF and I loved it immediately [Ed. note: can confirm], and it has now become part of our tradition. Deliciously sweet, tart and zesty, with a gorgeous, vibrant color. Last year, it was served with mini pumpkin popovers, and yes we're repeating it this year [Ed. note: aww yeah].
If you feel like trying something a little "different" for this year's Thanksgiving feast, this is worth a try. Any leftover butter can be added to toast, pancakes or roasted brussels sprouts the following week.
Hope everyone's turkey-day prep is going well!
NOTE: I make my cranberry sauce a few days before Thanksgiving so am not overwhelmed the day of, and always make extra specifically for this butter.
PS: One year ago we were feeling healthy with these (www.moveablefeast.me/blog/brussels-sprouts-with-red-black-grapes).
Number of servings: Makes about 1 ½ cups
For the last seven years or so, my BF and I have held a Christmas Eve dinner for some very dear friends. For the first few, a new towering cake would be presented, i.e., spice with eggnog buttercream, chocolate with peppermint chocolate ganache and peppermint buttercream, whiskey soaked dark chocolate bundt, gingerbread roulade with eggnog filling, etc.
Then, this one. Moist, stout-spiked [Ed. note: HELLO], spicy gingerbread and mascarpone whipped cream icing–it has a deep, dark, mysterious flavor, yet tastes surprisingly light. It tastes like Christmas.
For a while I had been making a similar recipe as a gingerbread loaf, but after discovering this layered-cake version (originally adapted from a Claudia Fleming recipe, who created it while she was pastry chef at Gramercy Tavern in New York; then adapted by Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen), I knew the holiday dessert tradition was forever settled. No more auditions.
Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Number of servings: 8-10
Adapted from: Smitten Kitchen
NOTE: You’ll have up to 1 cup more whipped cream than you’ll need, which I use to frost the outside of the cake (not a fan of "naked" cakes, like the original recipe). If you wish to save the cream, it can stay stable for a couple days due to the added mascarpone. Start the cranberries the night before.
NOTE: Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen says, "This recipe makes three thin cake layers. As most of us have two cake pans, at best, you could also make it into two thicker cake layers, giving it a little more baking time. Or, you could do as I did, which is to hold the last bit of batter in a bowl until the first layer comes out and can be unmolded. It holds up just fine at room temperature for an hour."
Whipped mascarpone cream
I'm Jacquie, personal chef & recipe developer in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Living life with my wildly funny boyfriend and dog Marlowe. Lover of books, bourbon, chocolate and movies.