Tuesday, December 31, 2013

a year in review.

It's the end of the year.  It's the end of another year. 

I usually get to this point and feel like the last 365 days have blurred together into a mass of random memories.  I forget all that happened and all that I saw, tasted, and felt.  I keep thinking that I need to start a journal where I write one sentence each day about what happened so when I reach the end of the year, I can actually recall what I did and what I saw. (Perhaps a resolution for 2014 or perhaps that's why I have a blog.)

But some moments do stick out. Seeing the west coast for the first time and eating life-changing bread, sushi, and burritos.  A quick jaunt to Miami with one of my best friends.  Perfecting the homemade granola bar and making a red velvet engagement cake.  Eating loaves of babka from Breads Bakery, tomatoes 20 different ways at Stone Barns, ethereal gnocchi from Thirty Acres,  and epic bread from Tartine (yes the bread was that good that it deserves being mentioned twice).  We got a couch!  I cooked with ramps (a lot) and turned 28. I switched jobs and started cursing less.  I learned that miso is the greatest condiment of all time and you can never eat too much burrata.  I took a weekend trip upstate and ate a cheese danish that I still can't get out of my head.  I made homemade s'mores and my new favorite chocolate chip cookie.  I sat around a fire pit with my family singing Motown hits.  I cooked and cooked and cooked and made lots of magical things and some not so magical things.  I learned about cheese and drank a lot of pinot noir.  I saw a sunset that made the sky look as if it was on fire.  I drank hot chocolate that makes me rethink everything I ever thought I knew about hot chocolate.  We got a Christmas tree that is the most adorable Christmas tree we've ever gotten (Stanley I adore you).  And then there was that snowy weekend that I got engaged which made for the perfect most magical end to a very epic year (I'm still glowing).  

Here's to 2014.  

Sunday, December 29, 2013

buttermilk tea cookies with lemon glaze.

Lemon, buttermilk, and cornmeal are a match made in cookie heaven. 

(I'm at a loss of words today probably because my brain has turned to mush since I've done nothing but eat cookies for the last week.)  

These would make a fine addition to a New Year's Day brunch spread.  They are crunchy from the addition of cornmeal yet they remain soft and tender from the buttermilk.  It's as if a cookie and a piece of cake had a baby and this is what resulted (cookies and cake should get together more often).  I love them served with tea for a supremely awesome afternoon snack with friends but they are equally delicious with milk as most cookies are. 

Buttermilk Tea Cookies with Lemon Glaze

Makes about 24 cookies

For the cookies

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1/2 -1 teaspoon grated lemon zest (depending on how much lemon you like)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg 
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup buttermilk

For the glaze

Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar, or more as needed
1/4 cup poppy seeds or gold sanding sugar for sprinkling 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, lemon zest, baking soda, and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and vanilla, and mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Reduce the speed to low, and mix in 1/3 of the flour mixture and then ½ of the buttermilk. Scrape down the bowl. Add another 1/3 of the flour mixture and the remaining buttermilk.

Remove the bowl from the mixer, and fold in the remaining flour mixture with a rubber spatula until it is fully incorporated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.

When you are ready to bake the cookies, prepare the lemon glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, and confectioners’ sugar. The glaze should be as thick as glue. If the glaze is too thin, thicken it with additional confectioners’ sugar. Set it aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Using a small cookie scoop or a spoon, place 1-tablespoon rounds of dough onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, leaving 1 inch between cookies.

Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes, until they are golden around the edges (they may take a minute longer depending upon your oven). Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet.

While the cookies are still warm, drizzle a small amount (about ½ teaspoon) of the lemon glaze over each cookie, and then sprinkle on 1⁄8 teaspoon of the poppy seeds or sprinkles. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

salted chocolate rye cookie.

For those who are a fan of cookie dough, this cookie is for you.  (And really who isn't a fan of cookie dough.)  

This is rich and decadent.  A chocolate cookie that brings to mind flourless chocolate cake but is really so much better then flourless chocolate cake.  The small amount of rye flour binds the whole thing together and provides a subtle nuttiness.  The cookie emerges from the oven with barely set edges that give way to the creamiest, gooiest, center that most everyone can't resist.  A sprinkle of sea salt makes for the perfect finish.

Salted Chocolate Rye Cookies
Recipe from Baking Society which got it from the Tartine Book No. 3 (be still my heart Tartine)

¾ cup whole-grain dark rye flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
14 ounces dark chocolate (I used 72%), finely chopped
4 tablespoons. unsalted butter, cut into pieces
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1½ cups light brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Maldon salt or fleur de sel, for sprinkling

In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt.

Place chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water – keep , stirring until just melted and combined. Remove bowl from pan; set aside. (Note – This can be done in the microwave with success.  Just keep an eye on it and stir the mixture every 20 or so seconds so nothing burns since there is nothing worse than burnt chocolate.)

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, whip eggs on medium speed until fluffy. Keep the mixer on low and slowly add sugar. Once all the sugar is added, increase speed to medium-high and keep beating until eggs have nearly tripled in volume, about 6 minutes. Add reserved chocolate mixture and the vanilla; mix until combined. Again, with mixer on low, slowly add dry ingredients until a soft, loose dough forms. Cover dough with plastic wrap; chill 30 minutes. (Note – Dough can be kept in the fridge for about 48 hours before using.)

Heat oven to 350°. Using 2 tablespoons for each, drop cookies onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets, spaced about 2” apart. Sprinkle cookies with Maldon salt or fleur de sel; bake until cookies are puffed, 8-10 minutes (rotate pans halfway through the baking time).

Monday, December 23, 2013

lemon, olive oil, and almond biscotti.

There was a time in my life, not too long ago, that I dismissed biscotti  in favor of the more fancy cookie varieties. Biscotti appeared so plain and boring when next to the chocolate-caramel-sea salt-nutty-oatty-cookies that are all the rage.  But you reach a point, usually after your third over the top cookie in a row when you want to reach for a palate cleanser, and that's where these shine.  

These biscotti may not look like much, but they pack a lot of flavor.  The combination of almonds, lemon, and olive oil is one of the most classic Italian pairings of all time and the reason it's been around for so long is because it's that good.  This particular biscotti recipe is one of my favorites.  They come together quickly, pack a flavor punch, and make for a wonderful addition to any cookie plate.  I also love pairing them with lemon or vanilla gelato if you are serving them in a more formal setting.  Or as a side to an afternoon cup of coffee as is the tradition in Italy.  

Lemon, Olive Oil, and Almond Biscotti
Recipe adapted from One Girl Cookies 

I streamlined this recipe because when I finally got around to making these I was looking for ways to make my life easier since I still had more cookies to make and a kitchen to clean.  I think my version allows you to whip these up with ease.

Makes about 48 cookies

1 cup almond flour
2 large eggs
Grated zest of 2 Meyer lemons (or 2 regular lemons or 1 lemon and and 1 orange)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup Sicilian (preferred) or regular olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon table salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the eggs, lemon zest, sugar, olive oil, and vanilla. Mix on medium speed for 1 minute.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the ground almonds, flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer running on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, stopping two or three times to scrape down the bowl. Mix until the dough is just beginning to come together. Do not overmix.

Scoop the dough out onto a parchment paper–lined baking sheet, and shape it into 2 equal logs. The dough should be sticky—you may need to wet your hands slightly with water in order to work with it. Each log should be about as wide as two knuckles on your middle finger and about ½-inch tall. Bake for 14 minutes. Rotate the baking sheet and bake for 14 more minutes. Let the logs cool on the baking sheet for 12 to 15 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 250 degrees.  

Transfer the logs to a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, slice the logs into ½-inch-thick biscotti. Put the biscotti on the parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing them ½-inch apart. Bake for 7 minutes. Rotate the baking sheet and bake for 7 more minutes, or until the biscotti are slightly crisp on the exposed sides. Transfer them to a wire rack and let them cool completely.

Thursday, December 19, 2013


I got engaged.  

I got engaged after 7 years, 11 months, and 10 days of dating a guy who has not only become my best friend but is truly in every sense of the phrase my better half. 

I questioned how I would divulge this, talk about it, dictate it to people because we spent the majority of the morning after it occurred having it be a secret between us.  I enjoyed those hours.  It made the whole thing feel special and utterly us.  I'm not one who enjoys talking about myself.  I'm not one who likes being the center of attention so discussing it in any way feels strange.  But when you feel giddy and you glow and you smile whenever you look over at the guy you are going to marry, you can't help but want to let people know.  (I've caught myself looking at him when we are at the gym and thinking to myself I get to marry this guy.  It's the most absurdly amazing thought ever.)  

Whenever I envisioned getting engaged I always thought about what I would eat after.  What I would cook after. What would I be craving.  (Once a foodie always a foodie.)  That dish ended up being cheesy avocado scrambled eggs, toast, a large coffee, and an almond chocolate croissant eaten while the snow fell outside. We were clothed in sweatpants and over-sized sweaters and our adorable Christmas tree (aka Stanley) lit the room up.  It felt special yet utterly normal and impossibly us.  It was what I always envisioned my proposal being like but a thousand times better.  It was comforting and warm and perfect in every sense of the word. 

So I'm engaged and I'm thrilled and that guy I love will someday by my husband and that's a thought that is weirdly frightening yet comforting at the same time.  

(To note.  The film Pitch Perfect was watched while we ate breakfast which makes the whole thing feel even more us.  If you haven't seen Pitch Perfect, I'm not sure if we can be friends.)

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

chewy ginger molasses cookies.

While ginger snaps have a place in this world, they do not have a place in my world.  It's not that they are bad per se (I do enjoy them on occasion), it's just that my personal preference leans more towards the soft and chewy. Thankfully this blog allows me to discuss all of the recipes that cater to my own personal preferences which is why we are going to talk about soft and chewy today.   

The key to soft and chewy is molasses.  Molasses which scares some people is an utter necessity in winter spice cookies.  Here it adds just the perfect hint of robustness.  It's rich flavor pairs wonderfully with the combination of ground ginger and crystallized ginger (double the ginger double the fun) making these so super gingery but in a not overpowering way, instead its in the perfect winter cookie way.  The cinnamon rounds things out and moves these firmly into spice cookie territory which is why I imagine these will be included in my holiday cookie boxes going forward.   

Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
Recipe adapted from Bon Appeit

Makes about 24 cookies 

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ½  teaspoon ground ginger
¾ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 large egg
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
⅓ cup granulated sugar
⅓ cup mild-flavored (light) or robust-flavored (dark) molasses
¼ cup (packed) dark brown sugar
⅓ cup chopped crystallized ginger
Coarse sanding or raw sugar (for rolling)

Place racks in lower and upper thirds of oven; preheat to 375°. Whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and salt in a small bowl. Whisk egg, butter, granulated sugar, molasses, and brown sugar in a medium bowl. Mix in dry ingredients just to combine.

Place sanding sugar in a shallow bowl. Scoop out dough by the tablespoonful and roll into balls (if dough is sticky, chill 20 minutes). Roll in sugar and place on 2 parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 2” apart.

Bake cookies, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until cookies are puffed, cracked, and just set around edges (overbaked cookies won’t be chewy), 8–10 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and let cool.

DO AHEAD: Cookie dough can be made and rolled into balls 2 weeks ahead. Freeze on a baking sheet; transfer to resealable plastic bags. Let sit at room temperature 30 minutes before rolling in sugar.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

a seating search.

After hosting a holiday party this past weekend where our guests were forced to sit Moroccan style on our floor, I realize it's now time to finally find some stools so we have a variety of seating options available to people.  

The below are pretty much exactly what I am looking for which means they probably cost a gazillion dollars. 

Image via Pinterest. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

coffee toffee.

It's cookie week (!!!) here on this blog because it's December and the only logical thing to do in December is eat cookies for breakfast (duh) and contemplate what your sister may want for Christmas (why are sisters so hard to shop for?).  

OK, let me rephrase that.  It's cookie and candy week on the blog because we are starting things off with coffee toffee.  (Actually, it's Cawfee Tawfee since I enjoy saying it in a Staten Island accent much to my boyfriend's chagrin but saying it that way is so much more fun.) 

This stuff is what coffee-aholics dream are made of.  It's what people who obsess over Coffee Heath Bar Crunch want to eat when it's too cold for ice cream.  It's what I want to sneak into movie theaters as my snack of choice. (Not that I condone sneaking food into the movie theater but if you happen to forget that you had some in your bag and you find yourself in the movie theater I don't see why you shouldn't eat it.  It would be foolish not to.) This is the kind of thing that begs to be handed out to neighbors and colleagues and friends and family during the holidays (in adorable cellophane bags) because its absurdly easy to make yet it looks fancy and festive.  It's not cloyingly sweet in the slightest (which is sadly what most holiday cookies tend to me).  It's instead subtly sweet with a great roasted coffee undertone that pairs brilliantly with the toasted hazelnuts, rich chocolate, and flaky sea salt.  No one would be opposed to something this good.  

Coffee Toffee
Recipe adapted (barely) from the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

I made the smallest of changes here because I'm me and I have my own personal preferences.  Those preferences include swapping semi-sweet chocolate for bittersweet chocolate because I love bittersweet with coffee and applying a sprinkle of sea salt to the top with the hazelnuts because sea salt makes everything better. 

1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons molasses (can swap corn syrup or honey)
1/4 teaspoon salt (or a heaping 1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt)
1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 cup bittersweet (about 70% cocoa), or 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts (toasted, skinned and cooled) or another nut of your choice
Flaky sea salt for sprinkling

Line a small (9x13) baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon mat and set aside.

In medium heavy saucepan (I used a 3-quart) with a candy thermometer attached, melt butter, brown sugar, white sugar, molasses, salt and espresso together over together. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a whisk or silicon spatula until the temperature approaches 250 degrees, at which point you should stir constantly until it reaches 300 degrees.

Pour immediately into the prepared baking sheet — you can spread it more evenly with a offset or silicon spatula but don’t worry if you have neither. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the toffee and let them sit for a minute until soft, then spread the chocolate evenly over the candy base.

Sprinkle the chocolate with chopped hazelnuts and the flaky sea salt and then, if you’re as impatient as we are, you can slide the sheet onto a cooling rack in the freezer until the toffee is set.

Break into pieces and store in an airtight container. If you’re kitchen runs warm, you might prefer to keep it in the fridge so the chocolate doesn't get soft.

Thursday, December 12, 2013


In preparation for this weekends holiday soiree (which knowing my luck will get snowed out which means I will be forced to eat everything I make myself), I have found myself knee deep in cookie batter. Next week I will have loads of new (mostly cookie) recipes for you, but until then, here are some of my holiday favorites.  No one would be opposed if showed up with any of these at a party.  

chocolate-crusted banana blondies.  
austrian shortbread bars.
almond cookies. 
chocolate-dipped coconut macaroons.
chocolate raspberry rugelach. 
chocolate toffee cookies.

cornmeal biscotti.
ginger and brown butter dark chocolate chunk cookies.
gooey butter cookies.

salted dark chocolate espresso cookies.  
world peace cookies.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

butternut squash galette.

My mom gave me sad news over Thanksgiving.  She had gone through all of her old Gourmets (we are talking about 20 years worth) and gotten rid of them before I had the chance to go through them as well.  I was devastated thinking of all the recipes that were recycled before I was able to deem their worthiness. My consolation prize was that a small stack remained that I proceeded to pour over while Bandit (aka the worlds greatest dog) and I watched the Real Housewives (aren't holidays created so you have an excuse to watch bad TV?).  

This recipe was one of the few that I photocopied to bring home. It sounded simple yet elegant.  The kind of thing a French woman would serve her chic friends for lunch.  (Because don't we all want to pretend we are a chic French woman?) The end result was just as simple and elegant as I imagined.  What I didn't count on was how utterly satisfying it would be.  This is a dish that feels just at home on a lazy Sunday evening with the boy as it does at an fancy Saturday brunch with the girls.  Creamy goat cheese, sweet squash, and tender leeks get tossed together and then encased in a hearty crust.  The whole thing emerges from the oven looking perfectly rustic in that impossibly French way.  It's the epitome of winter comfort food.  

Butternut Squash Galette
Recipe adapted from Gourmet 

For Pastry

¾ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 tablespoon chopped sage leaves
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
4 to 6 tablespoons ice-cold water
1 large egg, lightly beaten

For Filling

1 (2-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2- by 1/4 -inch slices (4 cups)
½ teaspoon fine sea salt plus a generous pinch for the leeks
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 leeks (white and pale green parts only), thinly sliced crosswise
6 ounces soft mild goat cheese, crumbled

Make dough: Pulse flours, butter, sage, and sea salt in a food processor until mixture resembles coarse meal. Drizzle ice water evenly over mixture and pulse until it just forms a ball. (Do not overwork dough, or pastry will be tough.) Gently press dough into a 5-inch disk and chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour.

Make filling while dough chills:  Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle.

Toss squash with sea salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1 tablespoon oil and arrange in 1 layer in a 17-by 12-inch shallow baking pan or a baking sheet. Roast, stirring once halfway through roasting, until golden brown on edges and undersides, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove squash from oven and reduce oven temperature to 375°F.

Meanwhile, wash leeks, then cook in remaining 2 tablespoons oil with a pinch of sea salt in a 10-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl to cool slightly. Add squash, goat cheese, the other 1/4 teaspoon pepper and toss gently.

Make galette: Roll out dough into a 13-inch round on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin. Transfer to a baking sheet. Arrange filling in an even layer in center of dough, leaving a 2- to 3-inch border. Fold dough in on itself to cover outer rim of filling, pleating dough as necessary. Brush pastry with beaten egg and bake galette until crust is cooked through and golden on edges, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool on baking sheet on a rack 10 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

housewarming presents for the foodie.

This coming weekend I'm throwing my annual holiday party which mean's I've been thinking a lot about cookies to make (because I always go a little cookie crazy for the party) and hostess gifts (because everyone keeps asking me what to bring to the soiree).  My default suggestion when that question is asked is always alcohol mostly because I hate being left in charge of trying to figure out what people want to drink (I have to focus all my attention on the food!). But the more I pondered it, the more I realized that there are some items I wouldn't mind being given.  So below are a few of my favorite unique hostess gifts for the foodie and all things I wouldn't mind receiving.  

Short-stack Edition's Cookbooks - These are cookbooks that cater to a single ingredient.  I am obsessed with their quirky covers, their seasonality, and the fact that they have such wonderfully unique recipes.  

Big Spoon Roasters Nut Butters - Word on the street this is the nut butters dreams are made of.  I'm looking forward to endless peanut butter and banana sandwiches. 

Mike's Hot Honey - My absolutely favorite condiment.  I put this on roasted vegetables, on pizza (A la Paulie Gee's), on avocado toast, on ricotta toast, on grilled cheese...this list goes on.  At the end of the day this is utterly versatile and there is nothing you wont love it on.  

Noble Bourbon Barrel Maple Syrup - For lazy weekend breakfasts.  I am dreaming of pouring this over french toast, or pumpkin oatmeal, or ricotta pancakes.  I wouldn't mind using this in savory applications as well.  Like drizzled on roasted vegetables...

Fregola - The new ingredient (or at least new to me ingredient). I am envisioning a lot of winter salads of this, kale, and shaved pecorino.  The packaging is utterly Italian which kills me.

The Snacker by Liddabit Sweets - I'm not opposed to being given any of the Liddabit Sweet's candy bars but if I had to pick just one it would be the Snacker.  This is the kind of thing you can never rationalize buying yourself but if someone brings it for you, no complaints from me. 

If all else fails you can always bring a succulent!  A nice alternative to the standard flowers and a succulent lasts a lot longer.  

Monday, December 9, 2013

times two.

In preparation for this weekends holiday soiree, I am dreaming about double sinks, high ceilings, and all white everything.  

(This is a kitchen made for a party.)

Image via Pinterest

Sunday, December 8, 2013

cranberry buttermilk poundcake.

Cranberries have such an unfortunate situation.  They get regaled to Thanksgiving where they exist solely as a condiment playing second fiddle to turkey and stuffing (a really good condiment but a condiment none the less). This thought saddens me since no one should get to shine only on one day a year especially not something as wonderful as cranberries.  (It also saddens me because I always have a slight obsession for the underdog.)

So I decided after about 5 seconds of pondering that I needed a cranberry creation in my life and that's how this cranberry poundcake recipe was created.  

This poundcake is incredibly addicting.  I found myself with an entire loaf at the beginning of the day and somehow only 3/4 of the loaf remained at the end of the day.  (I'm just thankful I didn't eat half the loaf.)  Tart cranberries are an incredible addition to a dense, buttery, and tangy buttermilk poundcake.  An orange glaze provides an excellent hit of sugary sweetness with the orange pairing beautifully with the cranberries (a new flavor obsessions as evidenced by this recent recipe).  I love how beautifully this bakes up making it the ultimate hostess gift during the holiday season.  I plan on bringing a loaf to every party I get invited to.  So now cranberries get a whole month to shine.  

Cranberry Buttermilk Poundcake
Recipe adapted from the NYTimes

This cake bakes and freezes beautifully.  I highly suggest making a double batch and stowing one in the freezer for those unexpected moments when you are invited to a last minute soiree.  The hostess will love you since it makes for an exceptional breakfast the morning after a party which ensures you will always get invited back.

For the cake

3⁄4 cup butter, plus more for greasing the pan
1 3/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour, plus more for flouring the pan
1/4 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
1 ‌1⁄4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup cultured buttermilk
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
6 - 8 ounces of fresh cranberries tossed in 2 tablespoons of flour

For the glaze

1/3 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 -2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
2 teaspoons grated orange zest

Bring all the ingredients to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x5 loaf pan, tapping out excess flour.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda. In another medium bowl, whisk the sugar to break up clumps.

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter, stopping to scrape down the sides. Slowly drizzle in the sugar; cream the mixture well. Beat in the eggs one at a time, adding the next when the last has been incorporated. Mix in the vanilla. On low speed, mix in a third of the flour mixture until just combined. Add a third of the buttermilk, mixing until just combined. Repeat with the remaining flour and buttermilk. Add the orange juice and mix to combine. Stir in the cranberries.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a cake tester inserted comes out clean, about 60-70 minutes. The top of the cake will be lightly browned, and the sides will shrink slightly from the pan. Cool for 20 minutes before inverting onto a cake platter.

Before serving, stir together the glaze ingredients and spoon over the top and sides of the cake. It’s even better the next day.