Sometimes I love how picking up a new ingredient leads you into different culinary directions. I had lots of buttermilk left over after I made the fluffy blueberry buttermilk pancakes so I made the orange-cranberry scones and also this hearty apple cranberry loaf. It wasn’t long that I declared that I wasn’t a foodie hippie, but here I am a month later making cakes with ground almonds, buttermilk and ricotta with a minimal amount of flour (at least I didn’t go looking for muscovado sugar, and replaced it with brown sugar instead). And it was good. Moist, dense yet flavourful. The fresh cranberries were a wonderful addition. I liked the cake, and made a few modifications from the original at Sprouted Kitchen, but likely would not go through the fuss of buying such fancy ingredients a second time. This week, they all just perfectly came together at the same time.
Hearty Apple Cranberry Loaf
1/4 cup butter, just barely melted
1/2 cup ricotta
1 tbsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup all-purpose flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
1 cup ground almonds (or almond meal)
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (for topping) brown sugar
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tbsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp salt
2 cups chopped apple
1 cup fresh cranberries
1. Preheat the oven to 375F
2. Butter the loaf pan.
3. Whisk the eggs, butter, ricotta, vanilla and buttermilk together.
4. Add the dry ingredients together, including the cinnamon, ginger and salt and mix to combine. Gently mix in the buttermilk mixture until incorporated.
5. Fold in the apples and cranberries, do not over mix.
6. Fill the loaf pan and sprinkle remaining 2 tbsp. of the brown sugar. Bake on the middle rack for 45 minutes until golden on top and springy to the touch. Test for doneness with a toothpick, as the type of pan and oven vary. Do not overcook, as it will continue to cook a bit more when you remove it. Remove and cool.