Gluten Free Cranberry Eggnog Coffeecake
Sunday, December 15, 2013
I love Christmas morning. A leisurely rise out of bed, a big pot of tea and yummy baked treat for breakfast are pretty much all I need to feel like the holiday has arrived. It’s also the one morning of the year that I am likely to start the day of with chocolate. Because….well….its Christmas and Santa usually leaves a couple of treats in my stocking. (He knows me so well).
This year, I decided to create a coffee cake that would celebrate favorite flavors of the holidays. While peppermint, champagne and chocolate were all possibilities, it was eggnog and cranberries that won out. I loved the idea of sweet, creamy eggnog with tart cranberries. In order to make it all a bit healthier, I used soy nog in place of regular eggnog and replaced refined white sugar with minimally refined (and low on the glycemic index) coconut sugar. I also cut back on the amount of sugar and oil you’d typically see in a coffeecake recipe (and used fewer whole eggs, too).
Because I’ve been forced to give up gluten (oh how I miss you beer and ‘real’ bread….), I used an artisan gluten free flour blend (my current favorite is Pamela’s). Honestly I can’t be bothered with the fuss involved in figuring out my own GF blend (and frankly, there is WAY too much math involved). Fortunately there are plenty of great GF baking mixes on the market, so use your favorite (note: the one I used for this recipe had no leavening ingredients…if yours does, you can omit the baking powder from this recipe).
I think it’s safe to say that you could serve this to guests and they’d never know it was gluten free (which is saying something, since most GF baked goods give themselves away in their heavy almost gummy texture). This is a moist and dense cake, but, because I beat the heck out of it (you can do that with GF cakes….because, you know…there’s no gluten to get tough the more you beat it), it’s a bit lighter than most GF sweet breads and muffins I’ve had. See, there are some advantages to baking GF! If you’re not the allergy type, you can absolutely make this recipe with regular flour–same measurements (though, the healthy cook in me would want you to use whole wheat pastry flour).
While I chose to keep the topping simple for this one, if you have a favorite coffee cake topping, by all means, use it (consider cutting back on the sugar and butter that is typically used in most toppings). Share you variations with me–I’d love to see what you come up with!
Happy, Healthy Holidays!!
Gluten Free Cranberry Eggnog Coffeecake
servings: about 8 | time: about 60 minutes
1 1/2 cups artisan gluten free baking mix
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
1 cup coconut sugar
1 egg + 2 egg whites
1 cup soy or coconut milk nog
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1. Spray an 8″ cake or springform pan generously with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside
2. Sift the flour, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt together in a bowl. Set aside
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the grapeseed oil and coconut sugar on medium until well combined (about 1 minute)
4. Add the egg and egg whites and beat on medium high for a minute
5. Add the vanilla to the nog. Stir to combine
6. Turn the mixer down to low speed and dd 1/3 of the flour mixture. Beat on low to combine and add about 1/3 of the nog. Beat until combined and add the next 1/3 of the flour mixture. Beat to blend and add the next 1/3 of the nog. Add the final 1/3 of the flour mixture, blend to combine and add the final 1/3 of the nog. Turn the mixer up to medium-high and mix for about 3 or 4 minutes, until the batter is very smooth
7. Fold the cranberries into the batter and pour into the prepared pan. Bake for 45 minutes, testing the center for doneness. The cake may take up to 55 minutes to bake (it’s done when a paring knife inserted in the center comes out clean with a few moist crumbs
8. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and allow to cool for five minutes before turning out into a cooling rack
9. Allow the cake to cool completely. Dust with confectioners sugar (I use a fine strainer or sieve) and serve immediately. Cake will keep in an airtight container for 2 days
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