SMiLes by Meg

Cranberry Nut Bread

I spent the weekend in NYC with my mom, who was an amazing sport and took the train down from Massachusetts (that’s a very long train ride).  We went and saw Lion King on Broadway, exactly 20 years after I first saw Lion King in theaters, which is pretty cool.  I’m actually listening to the soundtrack now as I write this.  Anyways, despite a weekend in the city with lots of inspiration in the form of baked goods around us, we couldn’t come up with what I should bake this weekend.  Additionally, whatever I baked had to be doable while I watched the Patriots game, so there was a built-in time restriction.

So when I got back to my apartment today, I decided to look back through a bunch of recipes I stole from my mom’s recipe box before moving out, and settled on a bread that I could have with tea for the week.  In other words, I made something just for me this week!  (Sorry to anyone that was hoping for baked goods at school Tuesday…)  It’s a quick bread, and wintery enough in flavors that I felt like it was a good time of year to make it.

First, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda) in a large bowl.  When I say sift, I just use a whisk to mix them together.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 1Cranberry Nut Bread - 2Now, I’m almost afraid to admit this, but I have no idea what the difference between baking soda and baking powder is to me.  I know they aren’t interchangeable, but I have no idea why.  And I have too much pride to google it, but apparently not so much that I won’t admit my ignorance.  If someone were to enlighten me in the comments and save me a google search, I’d appreciate it.

Next, coarsely chop the cranberries.  This is one of those times that a chopper comes in super handy.  Especially one with convenient 1 cup markings on the side.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 3Stir the cranberries and chopped walnuts into the dry ingredients.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 4Cranberry Nut Bread - 5In a separate bowl, lightly beat an egg.  Then, whisk in the orange juice and olive oil.  The recipe originally called for salad oil, and I don’t know if that’s a thing, but I figured since I use olive oil in salads it’s the same difference.  Also, my orange juice may have a use by date of about a week ago, which is another reason this isn’t finding it’s way to school, but I haven’t gotten sick yet so I think that’s fine.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 6Cranberry Nut Bread - 7Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just moist.  I think this is the first time I’ve ever followed this direction for real in a recipe – I have a tendency to over-stir.  But you should definitely not ignore this direction because it keeps the bread moist after baking.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 8Cranberry Nut Bread - 9Spread the batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350°F for 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 10Allow to cool slightly in pan before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.  Or cool mostly.  I couldn’t wait for completely cool before slicing a piece.

Cranberry Nut Bread - 11Cranberry Nut Bread - 12Cranberry Nut Bread - 13In cross section, it looks pretty delicious.  This would also be a great bread around Thanksgiving, but it’s a generally good tea bread for the winter months.  Anyways, I should probably go finish season 1 of West Wing.  The perils of Netflix.


Cranberry Nut Bread - 14

Cranberry Nut Bread


  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup cranberries, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl.
  2. Stir in chopped cranberries and walnuts.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat an egg and whisk in orange juice and olive oil.
  4. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just moist.
  5. Spread into greased loaf pan and bake at 350°F for 50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.


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