So these toasts are the second half of our amuse, along with the Roasted Squash Soup. They are a bit tart, to whet the appetite. I’ve topped them here with a shaving of sharp cheese. This recipe is from my aged copy of Jane Brody’s Good Food Book.
Fresh Cranberry Bread Toasts (Makes one loaf – about 10-12 slices)
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 c. sugar
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
3 T. olive oil
4 t. grated fresh orange rind (I used two large navel oranges for both the rind and juice.)
3/4 c. fresh orange juice
1-1/3 c. fresh cranberries, washed, picked over and chopped
I found some Michigan cranberries for this recipe, but any fresh ones will work.
Mix the wet ingredients together.
Add the dry ingredients and the chopped cranberries.
Mix until just combined. The batter will seem dry but it’s supposed to be like that so it can soak up the juice from the berries as they cook.
Bake at 350 for about an hour.
Let it cool on a rack and wrap it. If you’ve baked it ahead this loaf freezes beautifully, otherwise let it stand a day to make it easier to slice.
The slices are so pretty! Just toast them lightly in the oven (375 for 5-10 minutes), adding the cheese shavings for the last minute. Or, just serve them untoasted with cheese. They are still delicious, and easier yet if your guests are in the kitchen mingling. Leftovers make terrific bread pudding (recipe to come later in the month). Make this recipe your own! It would be great with some spiced pecans in the batter, or nuts and a pinch of rosemary.