Sunday, December 26, 2010

Spiced Cranberry Duff

Spiced Cranberry Duff with eggnog from Ronnybrook Farms

 Writing and cooking from: Rhinebeck, NY

Merry belated Christmas!! I hope you enjoyed it and cooked up some yummies with your loved ones. We certainly did and I think we're all still suffering the effects of sugar overload and looking forward to eating some salad. :)

That said, I have a dessert recipe for you. It's rich, sweet, and tart, but filled with fruit so it's just a little bit lighter than your chocolate-filled dessert varieties. It's bright red for Christmas, but would be a hit on New Year's Eve as well. Particularly if you serve it with champagne instead of eggnog...but that glass of eggnog I served with the Spiced Cranberry Duff isn't just any eggnog so you may want to get some anyway, particularly if you live in NY's Hudson Valley. The eggnog is from Ronnybrook Farms. It's so creamy it's almost custard and seasoned with just a little bit of nutmeg. It comes in a glass bottle and its bottled at the farm. And it was featured on Iron Chef Eggnog Ice Battle. Bobby Flay made a cocktail with eggnog, rum, and champagne...that might be worth a try too.

But back to the dessert itself. What is a duff? Traditionally, it's a steamed or boiled English pudding, (which in England simply means dessert). Martha Stewart makes a New England Cranberry Duff, which I modeled mine after. It's basically her recipe with a few modifications - it's thicker, uses a different type of nut, and has more spices. Like Emeril would say, I kicked it up a notch. If you're ready to try this almost upside-down cake with a fun name (duff, duff, duff), here's the recipe:

Spiced Cranberry Duff


For the berry layer:
2 ½ cups fresh cranberries
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup sugar
1 ½ t. cinnamon
½ t. ginger

For the cake layer:
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup flour
½ tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 325 Fahrenheit. Generously grease bottom and sides (only about halfway up) of an 8x8 baking dish. Spread cranberries in an even layer in dish. Sprinkle walnuts on top. In a small bowl, mix sugar, cinnamon, and ginger. Pour mixture evenly over berries and nuts.

Whisk eggs and sugar until thick (about a minute with an electric mixer). Gradually add flour and salt. Beat in butter slowly. Beat until smooth. Pour cake batter evenly over berries.

Bake 45-55 minutes. Cake will be golden at the edges. Cool 15 minutes or more. Overturn duff onto serving platter.

Duff bubbling in the oven

 Local ingredients featured today:
Ronnybrook Farms eggnog, Ancramdale, NY (25 miles from Rhinebeck)
Giroux Poultry Farm eggs, NY
Cranberries (may not be local, I bought Ocean Spray brand, but they are made in the USA and in season right now)

Spiced Cranberry Duff

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