The Passionate Pursuit of Delight

Ingredient: Applesauce

Cranberry Nut Bread

Cranberry Nut Bread overhead shot

Why do we only eat cranberries between Thanksgiving and Christmas? Why? They are delicious and nutritious! Dried cranberries broke through years ago to enjoy year-round glory but fresh cranberries still haven’t been able to escape the holiday niche. Enter Cranberry Nut Bread which is delightful in the morning with a cup of coffee or equally delicious in the afternoon with a cup of tea.

In recent years I have gotten a little bit better about stocking up at the grocery store on fresh cranberries in November and December but I have to admit that last weekend while doing a freezer inventory I found one unused bag of cranberries from last year. Sigh. Why? I love them. How did I let them linger in the freezer for nearly a year?

Cranberry Nut Bread sliced

I don’t know. I have no excuse, only the promise to myself to do better and to ask you to join me. Let’s liberate the cranberry to a year-round fruit. We love cranberries, right? Tangent: I want to make this Cranberry Lime Ginger Sauce for Thanksgiving this year! Doesn’t it sound amazing?

Did you know that cranberries are only harvested for 6-8 weeks per year? I learned that watching the video below. It’s fascinating to watch.

Okay, let me tell you about this cranberry nut bread. I have lightened it up using apple sauce instead of oil in the recipe. The result is a light, moist loaf. There is also a swirl of cinnamon, sugar, and pecans in the middle of the loaf which adds a nice crunch and sweet balance to the tart cranberries.

I would love to hear if you serve cranberries at Thanksgiving and how you serve them. Does your family like cranberries? Do they prefer homemade cranberry sauce or the canned stuff? Do you have a favorite recipe? If you do, drop it in the comments section below.

How to Make Cranberry Nut Bread

Cranberry Nut Bread Pin

The Best Beet and Potato Latkes

Beet and potato latkes

I turn into a total mush during the holiday season. I don’t know why. My typically even keel demeanor goes straight out the window during December. I find myself on an emotional roller coaster sobbing during commercials in the glow of the Christmas tree lights. I imagine it has something to do with all the memories of holidays past and the desire to make the holiday season as special as possible. It’s a lot to process.

But, thinking about, preparing, and sharing holidays meals is what keeps me grounded. Food magazines arrive in my mailbox full of beautifully photographed and delicious-sounding foods. I nearly jumped out of my chair with excitement when I saw the article on latkes in the December 2016 issue of Cooking Light. The magazine article features recipes for:

I want to try them all! But, I decided to start with the beet latkes. The recipe below was adapted from Cooking Light version.

Beat and potato latkes

Potato latkes have been associated with the celebration of Hanukah since the mid-1800s. If, like me, you love learning about the cultural meanings of food, you can check out this Atlantic article on the history of latkes.  People of Jewish faith eat fried foods during Hanukah to celebrate the Miracle of the Oil where one day’s allotment of oil burned for eight days.

Beet and Potato Latkes

In addition to their cultural significance, latkes are just plain delicious. If you have never eaten them I encourage you to give them a try. I love latkes. I am absolutely full of affection for them. At their core, latkes are typically shredded potato and onion, flour, eggs, and seasoning that are fried in a skillet in a thin layer of oil. The potato pancakes turn out golden brown and crispy and are often served with sour cream and apple sauce.

Beet and Potato Latkes

To make beet latkes, you simply replace some of the potato with beets and their beet greens which give the latkes their spectacular coloring. So, when you are buying the beets make sure to buy beets with the greens still attached. The color contrast of the red beets and vibrant greens make this a perfect holiday meal. I am thinking that I need to plan a latke party.

Beet and potato latkes

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