I was thumbing through a new Food and Wine magazine the other day, and saw an article about making doughnuts.  They had several glaze recipes included for the doughnuts, including a tart cranberry glaze that I knew immediately I had to try.  A few pages over, I saw a citrus pound cake, and modified it very slightly to make it an orange pound cake because I think cranberry and orange are a perfect combination.  The result was a super moist pound cake paired with a nice, tart glaze that accented it perfectly.  Try it this weekend!
---Karly

ORANGE POUND CAKE WITH TART CRANBERRY GLAZE
For the cake:
2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons grated orange zest
 
For the glaze:
1 cup fresh cranberries
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
¼ cup water
3 cups powdered sugar
1 ½ teaspoons light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of salt

Put the fresh cranberries, granulated sugar, and water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.  Cook until the cranberries start to burst, mashing them as they do (I used a potato masher), and the mixture gets jammy, about 8 minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool slightly.  Put the cranberry mixture in a medium bowl with the powdered sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, and salt, and mix with a mixer until well combined.  Strain through a fine mesh strainer.  The glaze will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Butter and flour a 9 ½-by-5-inch glass loaf pan.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt and orange juice.  In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs and orange zest and beat until well combined.  Add the dry ingredients and the yogurt mixture in 3 additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, and beating well after each addition; scrape the bowl as necessary.  Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake 50 minutes, or until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Transfer to a cooling rack to cool, and after 20 minutes, remove from pan to continue cooling completely.  Serve the cake with the cranberry glaze on top.

NOTE:  I used an 8-by-5-inch loaf pan and ended up with a slight mess in my oven (from it bubbling over) and a longer baking time.  If you use a smaller loaf pan, you won’t use all of the batter.   

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     I try to make my lunch the biggest meal of the day, and the healthiest way to do that is a salad. Since my husband is not one for fish, ANY fish, no matter how I make it, I eat it on my own. Ahi tuna has become a favorite of mine, and today, I made a super simple and delicious dressing to go with it! Avocado should always go with Ahi tuna, in my opinion, and cranberries added a nice sweet pop! The dressing is light and sweet and it all went so great together! Try it for dinner!  (And hey, guys, while you're here at the blog, go the "Prize Giveaway!" page to enter for your chance to win!)
---- Jenny


AHI TUNA, AVOCADO & CRANBERRY SALAD WITH ORANGE & TARRAGON VINAIGRETTE
Lettuce greens (I used spinach and arugula)
1 Ahi tuna steak
1/4 cup dried cranberries
tomato, diced
1/2 avocado sliced
1-2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1-2 tablespoons freshly grated Asiago cheese

In a skillet over medium to medium-high heat, sear tuna about 3 minutes on each side in 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil. Take out of skillet and slice lengthwise and arrange over salad. Sprinkle cheeses and cranberries over everything, and drizzle with dressing.

Dressing:
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
3 tablespoons sweet red table wine
3 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon tarragon

In a small salad caraffe, combine ingredients and shake. Pour immediately.

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I’m always looking for different ways to make pork chops, so I decided to come up with a pan sauce using cranberry juice, sage, and some other ingredients.  It turned out to be a perfect complement to the pork.  Try it tonight!
---Karly

PAN SEARED PORK CHOPS WITH CRANBERRY SAGE PAN SAUCE
4 center cut pork chops
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 shallots, finely chopped
Flour
1/3 cup cranberry juice
1/3 cup red wine (I used Zinfandel)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage

Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil over medium-high heat in a skillet.  Season the pork chops to taste with salt and pepper, and cook, 4-6 minutes per side until done, depending on the thickness of the chops.  Add a little more olive oil to the skillet if necessary, and then add the shallots and sauté for 2-3 minutes.  Add the sage and sauté one minute.  Sprinkle in a teaspoon or two of flour, and whisk for one minute.  Add the cranberry juice and red wine and let simmer until slightly thickened, and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Serve the sauce over the pork chops.

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     I am so excited that our fans chose this week’s secret ingredient for Kitchen Psycho!  It took me a few days to decide what I wanted to make, but when I did, I went on a cooking spree and made it all in one day.  This is the appetizer that I came up with; it’s slightly sweet, slightly spicy, and completely delicious!
---Karly


SWEET AND SPICY CRANBERRY CHEESE SPREAD

1 (8 oz) block of cream cheese, softened
¼ cup jalapeno pepper jelly
4-5 small green onions, chopped
1/4-1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/4-1/2 cup dried cranberries
Salt and pepper, to taste
   
     Combine the cream cheese, pepper jelly, green onions, and salt and pepper in a medium bowl and mix until well combined with a mixer.  Stir in the pecans and cranberries.  Serve with toast or crackers.

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     The savory dishes for cranberries can be a bit of a challenge, but we've come through for you! This one was my own invention. It turned out really tasty, with a very nice texture! If you want yours a little less, um, grainy, just substitute the polenta for more corn flour. I like them they way they are though. They're hearty! In fact, you could adapt this into a really nice stuffing recipe! Add some sausage, onions, celery... ohhh, yeeeeaaahhh!
--- Jenny 


CRANBERRY & SAGE CORN MUFFINS
1 cup flour or gluten-free flour
1 tbsp baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup corn flour or masa flour
½ uncooked polenta
½ cup butter, melted
1 large egg
¼ cup honey
3 tablespoons brown sugar
¾ cup milk
1 tablespoon ground sage
½ cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease muffin cups.

Mix flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir in cornmeal. Stir butter, egg, honey, and milk into cornmeal mixture. Stir until just moistened and any flour or cornmeal chunks are broken up.

Fill greased muffin tins and bake for 15 – 20 minutes.

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     Oh, how sweet are these? So adorable, and so tasty! This week is Fan's Choice Week, so we polled our followers on Facebook, and the decision came in: Cranberry. At first, I thought I'd do a tart. But these were just too cute to pass up. This is not an original recipe, as I saw these on www.MarthaStewart.com. (I figured since this is a "gimme" week, I didn't have to get too creative.) I followed the recipe exactly, choosing to put orange peel in the crusts. They're great! Try 'em!
---Jenny

MINI CRANBERRY MERINGUE PIES  (from www.marthastewart.com)

Crust:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons ice water, plus more if needed

     Pulse flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor to combine. Add butter; process until mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 seconds. Add yolk; pulse. With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube; process until dough just holds together (no longer than 30 seconds). Shape into a disk. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least 1 hour (up to 2 days)

Cranberry Filling & Meringue:
3 1/4 cups fresh cranberries (12 ounces)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped blood orange zest, plus 1/4 cup blood orange juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 large egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar

     Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/8 inch thick. Cut out 4 1/8-inch fluted rounds, and fit into cups of a standard 12-cup muffin tin (not nonstick). Pierce bottoms with tines of a fork. Freeze 15 minutes.
     Line each shell with parchment paper, and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake 15 minutes. Remove weights and parchment. Return to oven; bake until bottoms are just turning golden, 5 minutes more. Transfer to wire racks; let cool 5 minutes. Remove shells from tin; let cool completely.
     Bring 2 cups cranberries, 1 cup sugar, and 1 1/2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat, and simmer mixture, stirring occasionally, until cranberries have burst, about 5 minutes. Pour through a coarse sieve, then a fine sieve; discard solids. (You should have about 1 3/4 cups; if you have less, add water).
     Bring strained cranberry juice, 1/4 cup sugar, the zests, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and remaining 1 1/4 cups cranberries to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; simmer, stirring occasionally, until cranberries are soft but have not burst, about 3 minutes.
     Meanwhile, stir cornstarch, blood orange juice, and 1/4 cup water in a bowl; whisk into cranberry mixture. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook, stirring, until translucent, about 1 minute. Divide among prepared shells. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour (up to overnight).
     Preheat broiler. Put egg whites and remaining 1/4 cup sugar into the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer set over a pan of simmering water; whisk until sugar has dissolved and mixture is hot to the touch. Attach to mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; beat on medium speed until foamy. Raise speed to high. Add cream of tartar; beat until medium, glossy peaks form. Divide the meringue evenly among pies.     Set pies under broiler until tops are browned, 30 seconds to 1 minute.

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