There are usually several recipes every year on the holiday series that feature cranberries, and with good reason.
Ever since I first tried them, (which must be going on 9-10 years now) they’ve been one of my favorite ingredients to bake with.
It’s amazing to me that a fruit that, to be honest, isn’t the most pleasant to eat by itself, can be transformed into something so tasty when baked.
A lot of times, when cranberries are cooked or baked into a dish, they’re added as just a highlight or for a pop of color.
With the exception of cranberry sauce, it’s rare that a dish will showcase the cranberry in and of itself.
I think the reason for that is probably the cranberry’s tart/bitterness. It’s not for everyone.
As a lover and apologist of the cranberry, I’ve put it to good use on this blog as an ingredient, thought most of those uses have been like the ones I’ve mentioned before, where the cranberries are a highlight, but not exactly the ‘star’ of the recipe show.
In recent years though, I’ve been trying to be more intentional in making things that truly do embrace the cranberry without pushing it to the background or merely adding it to other things.
This year, I’m pleased to be back with another cranberry-centric recipe that I think manages to top both of those.
This may look like a lot, but in actuality the ingredients are very simple/minimal. The title really says it all: it’s pie crust, cranberries and almonds, and not much else. As much as I love cranberries, I was bit nervous when I first decided to make this. I knew I would either probably love it or…not love it.
Guess which one it was.
Yeah so, this pie was amazing. The cranberries are front and center here, and rightfully so. There is a bit of brown sugar to help temper the tartness, but the cranberry flavor is still dominant here–and believe it or not, it really works.
In addition to the fact that the raw cranberries inside the pie burst, but don’t completely liquify, the almonds give the filling amazing added texture. The bottom of the pie is what you would expect from a typical, standard pie crust. but the top is more like a topping of a buckle or a cobbler. The combination of the two really works.
This is a perfect dessert for holidays, and I think it’s delicious enough to convert the staunchest cranberry skeptic.
Day 10: Cranberry Almond Pie
Cranberry Almond Pie
Recipe Adapted from Food Network Magazine
- 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick cold unsalted butter, frozen
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 3-4 tablespoons ie water, or more as needed
- 4 cups fresh cranberries
- 1/4 cup finely chopped sliced almonds
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- Pinch of salt
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
For Crust: In a large bowl, combine the flour, granulated sugar and salt. Use a box grater to cut the butter directly into the dry ingredients and stir together with a fork.
Make a well in the center of the bowl and add the vinegar and water and mix together until dough starts to clump together. If you need to, you may add a few more tablespoons of water just until it comes togeher.
Turn dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, and gently shape into a 6 inch disc. Wrap it up tight, and place in the fridge overnight to chill.
Roll dough out onto a floured surface into a 13 inch round. Transfer it to a 9-10 inch deep dish pie dish. Trim the excess, then crimp the edges around the dish with your fingers. Refrigerate for one hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
For Filling: Combine the cranberries, almonds, 1/2 cup of the brown sugar, the cinnamon, allspice and salt in a bowl and toss until evenly coated. Pour the filling into the refrigerated crust.
Beat the egg in a medium bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until light in color and thick like whipped cream, about 5 minutes. Beat in the remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar and the granulated sugar, then beat in the flour, melted butter and almond extract; the batter should be the consistency of cake batter.
Drop heaping spoonfuls of the batter over the cranberry filling, leaving gaps in between. Sprinkle the top with sugar.
Bake the pie until the batter is golden brown and the crust is browned and cooked through, 50 to 55 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely.
Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.