Cranberry Cup Cakes
|1¼ cups||frozen cranberries|
|2 tablespoons||caster sugar (for puree)|
|2 tablespoons||lemon juice|
|¾ cup||caster sugar|
|2 cups||self raising flour, sifted|
- Place cranberries, caster sugar, lemon juice and water in a small saucepan.
- Cook for about 5 minutes over a moderate heat until berries expand and are softened.
- Crush berries using the back of a spoon until a thick puree and allow to cool.
- Remove 2 tablespoons and push through a sieve. Set aside for icing.
- Preheat oven to 180°C and line a large muffin tray or two small muffin trays with patty cases.
- Cream butter and caster sugar until pale.
- Add beaten eggs and cooled cranberry mixture.
- Stir in sifted flour, salt and milk.
- Spoon mixtures into paper cases and bake for about 20 minutes or until golden (12-15 minutes if using smaller muffin size).
- Cool on a wire rack.
|1½ cups||icing sugar, sifted|
- Place butter and the reserved strained cranberry puree in a bowl.
- Beat in icing sugar gradually until thick and smooth. Use to decorate cup cakes.
Cooking with Cranberries - preparation tips
Always remember to:
- Cook frozen cranberries just until they pop. Longer cooking brings out their bitterness and makes them mushy.
- Do not use aluminium cookware when cooking cranberries as the berries' acid reacts with aluminium and causes it to discolour. Use stainless steel, glass or porcelain.
- Eliminate foaming and over boiling when cooking frozen cranberries by adding one teaspoon of butter.
- Chop cranberries in a food processor, using quick on/off pulses, to save time.
- When cooking, add a little salt or ¼ teaspoon baking soda or baking powder to cranberry sauce to reduce the amount of sugar needed and bring out the cranberry flavour.
- Soak dried cranberries in warm water, orange juice or a liqueur for 20 to 30 minutes to get plumper berries which can be used as a substitute for frozen or fresh cranberries in many recipes.
- For baked goods (i.e. muffins, cakes or slices), chop frozen cranberries and toss them with sugar before stirring into the batter to improve sweetening.