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Friday, February 14, 2014

Secret Ingredient Cranberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake

coffee cake
Secret Ingredient Cranberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake
I'm writing this nearly four weeks before it'll actually post, on Valentine's Day, when all of you will read it. I can't help but wonder what that day is going to look like for us. I know I have a doctor's appointment scheduled for that morning. I know it's the last doctor's appointment scheduled currently, since my due date is just two days later, on the 16th. Are there any signs of labor yet (note: Feb 14 IS a full moon this year!)? Has baby McLaury already arrived? (spoiler alert--she's HERE!!!)
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Today as I write this, on January 19th, I'm not feeling overly anxious about it one way or another. Yes, we are so excited to meet this baby, and find out the gender once and for all! At the same time, I have been determined to enjoy every last day as a family of two. It's crazy to think it's been just Ryan and me in this little family for five and a half years, and now here we are, getting ready to change everything...forever. As a rather impatient person who feels the need to plan and schedule every last minute, I've been surprisingly relaxed about pregnancy. This baby will make its arrival exactly when its supposed to! I can't wait to read this post in a few weeks and see how and if the situation has changed at all ;)

Enough about babies, because I'm sure there's plenty more of that to come! Let's talk about this coffee cake. I made it for a brunch with friends in December, and wasn't planning on blogging it, especially since I have a similar coffee cake already on The Sweets Life. Then I took a bite of the cake as I was arranging pieces on a platter and I immediately went to grab my camera. This coffee cake needs to be shared--it's definitely something special! I credit the almond extract, which I'm convinced makes everything special (like these amazing cookies!). Here, it transforms a pretty basic coffee cake into something unforgettable! If you're having a hard time finding cranberry sauce this time of year, you should be able to substitute your favorite kind of jam with no problems!

One Year Ago: Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cookies and Vanilla Butternut Squash Soup
Two Years Ago: Homemade Whole Wheat English Muffins and Chocolate Dipped Coconut Macaroons
Three Years Ago: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake and Carrot Spice Muffins
Four Years Ago: Bran-Breaded Tilapia and Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Secret Ingredient Cranberry Sour Cream Coffee Cake
from Dorothy Lane Market

-1/2 cup butter
-1 cup sugar
-2 eggs
-2 cups flour (I used a mix of whole wheat and all purpose)
-1 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp baking soda
-1/2 tsp salt
-8 oz (1 cup) light sour cream
-1 tsp almond extract
-1-2 cups whole berry cranberry sauce
-1/2 cup chopped pecans
-powdered sugar, for topping

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
2. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Alternate adding the dry ingredients with the sour cream, beating well after each addition. Mix in almond extract.
3. Spread half of the batter into prepared pan. Top with cranberry sauce and finish with remaining batter, spreading carefully to cover over sauce. Sprinkle with pecans. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving.