Save some Cranberry Orange Bread for breakfast Christmas morning.
Today I'm home baking, and first on the list is Cranberry and Orange Bread. I haven't made it the last couple of years, so it was almost like making a new treat. This year I decided to make it healthier with a mixture of whole wheat flour and white flour. It gave it an earthier texture, not as refined as the previous version. It also made it suitable for breakfast. Whenever possible, one should strive to eat cake for breakfast, I always say, but even I can't bear the thought of a white flour/sugar concoction early in the morning.
But if you aren't worried about your intake of refined flour, go ahead and make it with white flour. It's still marginally healthy, with zero cholesterol, and raisins, cranberries, and flax for fiber.
Daughter Number One had it for breakfast, and she liked the crispy crust.
A few tips on prepping the ingredients: Cranberries are easy to chop in a food processor. A few whizzes is all it takes. Instead of grating orange peel on a grater and risking grating your knuckles, I like to peel thin strips with a vegetable peeler. Then I chop the peel finely with a sharp knife. To grind flax seeds, use a coffee grinder. A blender usually doesn't work. I have a coffee grinder dedicated for this purpose only. (Perfect for the grinder you got as a Christmas gift and didn't need.)
Cranberry and Orange Bread
1 tablespoon flax seeds, ground
¼ cup water
1 ¼ cups all-purpose unbleached white flour
(not bread flour, or strong flour)
¾ cup wholemeal flour or wholewheat pastry flour
¾ cup sugar
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1/3 cup golden raisins
1 cup chopped cranberries
¾ cup orange juice
¼ cup margarine, melted
Preheat the oven to 350F/180C. Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
Whisk the ground flax seeds and the water together. Set aside.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, stir together the flours, the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pecans, orange peel, raisins, and cranberries. Add the orange juice and the melted margarine, and stir until just combined. Pour into the loaf pan and place in the oven.
Set the oven timer for 50 minutes, though you may need a whole hour depending on your oven. Check for doneness by inserting a knife into the centre of the loaf. When the knife comes out relatively clean, the loaf is done.
Wait ten minutes before slicing.
Note: flax seeds tend to make bread brown sooner, so the darkness of the loaf isn't a good indicator of doneness.