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Cranberry, Orange & Walnut Streusel Bread

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Yields four mini loaves, one 9x5-inch loaf, or one 12-cup Bundt cake.

  • 6 oz. (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened; more for the pans
  • 10-1/2 oz. (2-1/3 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour; more for the pans
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1-1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. table salt
  • 3/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • 1-1/2 tsp. finely grated orange zest
  • 1-1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Position a rack in the middle of the oven, and heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly butter and flour four mini loaf pans, one 12-cup Bundt pan, or one 9x5-inch metal loaf pan.

In a food processor grind the walnuts, brown sugar, and cinnamon, pulsing in short bursts until the walnut pieces are small, 20 to 30 seconds. Set the streusel aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the cranberry pieces and orange zest and whisk again.

In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a medium mixing bowl, mix the butter on low speed with the stand mixer’s paddle attachment or on medium-low speed with a hand mixer until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and continue mixing on low until slightly fluffy. Scrape the bowl and beater. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing until smooth after each addition.

Stop the mixer, scrape the bowl and beater, and add half the flour mixture. On low speed (for either mixer), mix until the flour drifts disappear and then add half the buttermilk; mix until just blended. Repeat with the remaining flour and buttermilk. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix until smooth.

If using mini loaf pans, fill each pan about a third full with batter and spread smooth. Sprinkle a heaping tablespoon of the streusel over the batter in each of the pans. Divide the remaining batter among the pans, spread smooth, and sprinkle the top of each loaf with the remaining streusel. If using a Bundt pan or full-size loaf pan, pour in half the batter and spread smooth. Sprinkle half of the streusel over the batter, top with the remaining batter, spread smooth, and then sprinkle the remaining streusel over the top.

Bake until the loaves are golden and a skewer or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 45 to 55 minutes for mini loaves (55 to 60 minutes for a Bundt pan and 60 to 65 minutes for a full-size loaf pan).

Let the loaves cool for 10 to 15 minutes in the pans on a rack to give them time to set and then turn them out onto a rack and flip right side up to cool completely.

Photo: Scott Phillips

I cooked a double batch in mini loaf pans. My husband can't keep his hands of them. They are really great, follow the recipe but didn't take as long to cook and subed milk and vinegar for buttermilk came out great.

Delicious! Could not stop eating it when they came out of the oven. My husband loved it too. These will make perfect gifts. Don't forget to follow fine cookings blog advice on what size pans to use. I got the mini 5x3x2 from sur la table and they were perfect.

Very flavorful and moist, and the inner streusel layer adds interest. I divided the batter into only 3 (19-fluid-ounce) mini loaf pans, and it didn't rise much above the rims. Therefore, slightly doughy result. My husband loves this bread and doesn't see the point in baking any other sweet bread now that i have this recipe. However, I want to find a fecipe that will rise more reliably.

This is a wonderful holiday recipe. The streusal layer in the inside adds interest and keeps each mouthful delicious. I have logged onto this website specifically to find this recipe from a few years ago.

I made this recipe using a 9x5 loaf pan and a scale to measure the flour. I had to over-bake the bread to get the center done which caused a dark thick crust and some dryness. The streusel filling caused the bread to separate in half when removing it from the pan. I reassembled it to cool but it separated again upon slicing. A significant amount of the streusel topping fell off the bread when removing it from the pan and, again, when cutting it. The bread had a decent flavor but a dense crumb. If I were to make it again I would use the mini-loaf size pans to prevent over baking and I would add some melted butter to the streusel topping to help prevent it from falling off.

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