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Video: Cranberries and more: Quick Thanksgiving desserts

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    >>> and the part of the meal you know you don't have room for but somehow you seem to find it. we are talking dessert. if you just haven't had a minute to think about it don't worry, "new york times" columnist melissa clark has last-minute ideas you can make from scratch or just buy a box.

    >> hi, how are you?

    >> don't buy a pie. you can do.

    >> this >> somebody said to say that.

    >> so easy.

    >> see what i'm say?

    >> hody can do this. i'm fine what are we make, sweetie?

    >> a cranberry almond cake , see there the first step is make cranberry sauce or buy cranberry sauce you if you have some cans in your house, maybe bought a little bit of extra, use that.

    >> fresh cranberries.

    >> cranberries, sugar, the great thing about this.

    >> that a cup?

    >> about a cup and a third.

    >> the great thing about this, use the same cranberry sauce you make for the cake, tuesday on the table, exact same thing. do it all at once.

    >> got it.

    >> orange juice .

    >> a half a cup?

    >> yeah.

    >> okay.

    >> take that off. we have got some orange zest there

    >> zest. zest to make it zesty. and that's just plain old water. let that bubble about 15 minutes and then at the end of it, it's gonna look just like cranberry sauce . and we have got some done over here.

    >> got it.

    >> all made. okay.

    >> now, a birth almond cake . i have got whole, raw almonds, unskinned. use whatever almonds you have in the house. if you have the little blanchd ones, -- blanched ones, no problem. a little bit of sugar p salt. so we are done there going to grind them up. the great thing about this do the whole thing in the food processor .

    >> hoda's cooking.

    >> you're doing good. let it go. okay. bi bingo. it's ground.

    >> add a lot of birutter.

    >> is a butter cake .

    >> is there a way to use a substitute, i can't believe it's not butter or something?

    >> no. no.

    >> sorry about that.

    >> don't mess with that.

    >> not a very nice thanksgiving attitude.

    >> no you can do whatever you want .

    >> whatever you want .

    >> just will taste terrible.

    >> the thing about this butter is it looks like a lot, thisser is was a lot of people it is not that much butter, a lot of fat from the almonds, good, healthy fat.

    >> right.

    >> let it get creamy.

    >> yeah.

    >> now, hoda, add the flour.

    >> finally, get to do something. salt in there, too.

    >> actually, and there's baking powder, which is important. want it to have a little rise.

    >> all right. start. there we go.

    >> how long do you bake it?

    >> about an hour.

    >> you put two-thirds in and the cranberry saw that is the secret ingredient , can't see tomorrow from the top. boll doll lop it on top.

    >> that is a dollop all right. want more? that a sloppy dollop.

    >> okay. when you cut that cake it is going to be perfect.

    >> let's go ahead and taste things.

    >> fred is on, bake it at 350, almonds on top.

    >> okey-doke.

    >> just keep doing this bake this and eat it later.

    >> that this so good.

    >> the good thing about this cake, you can make it from probably stuff you have in your cabinet exalmonds, butter.

    >> delicious.

    >> that is a souffle cake, a glorified giant brownie. when you get a brownie, really small. if you make it into a cake and cut yourself a big piece, sounds fancy, if you call it chocolate souffle cake.

    >> and this?

    >> apple pear crips. put it in the fridge, when you pull the turkey out, pop it in the oven.

    >> frank gifford , want this with vanilla ice cream.

    >> melissa, thank you so much.

    >> happy thanksgiving.

    >> have is to try this. get in there.

TODAY recipes
updated 11/20/2012 8:08:02 PM ET 2012-11-21T01:08:02

Recipe: Cranberry almond butter cake

Ingredients
  • 4 ounces whole, raw almonds (skin on, about 7/8 cup)
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) butter, sliced into 8 pieces
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup cranberry sauce (see note)
  • 2 tablespoons sliced, blanched almonds
Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8-inch cake pan and line the bottom with a parchment round. Butter the parchment.

2. In a food processor, combine the almonds, sugar, and salt and process until the almonds are finely ground.

3. Add the butter, eggs and extracts and process until creamy. Scrape down the sides and pulse in the flour and baking powder. Scrape 2/3 of the mixture into the prepared pan and then spoon dollops of the cranberry sauce on top. Cover with remaining batter and sprinkle the top with almonds.

4. Bake until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with crumbs on it (but not wet batter), 50 to 60 minutes. Cool on a wire rack before serving.

Note: To make cranberry sauce, in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine 2 (12-ounce) bags of cranberries, 1 1/3 cups sugar, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup apple cider or orange juice, and 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest. Simmer until berries burst and mixture is syrupy, 15 to 20 minutes.

Serving Size

Serves 8 to 10. Time: 20 minutes plus baking.

Recipe: Apple-pear crumble

Ingredients
  • For the streusel:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mace
  • 11 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • For the filling:
  • 3 pounds mix of apples and pears, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons brandy or dark rum
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 2-quart gratin or shallow casserole dish.

2. For the streusel, mix together the flour, sugar, salt and spices. Drizzle in the melted butter and use a fork to stir up the streusel until the mixture is crumbly. Break up any large crumbs (larger than 1-inch) with your fingers.

3. In a large bowl, mix together all of the filling ingredients. Pour filling into the baking dish and top evenly with the streusel. (Crumble can be assembled the day before and refrigerated.) Bake until the streusel is golden and crisp and the fruit juices are bubbling, about 45 to 55 minutes.

4.  Serve crisp warm or at room temperature.

Serving Size

Serves 8-10.

Recipe: Chocolate souffle cake with candied ginger and pomegranate

Ingredients
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
  • 280 grams bittersweet chocolate, chopped (about10 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 extra-large eggs, separated
  • 65 grams granulated sugar (about 6 tablespoons)
  • 1 cup crème fraîche or sour cream, lightly whipped
  • Chopped candied ginger, for garnish
  • Pomegranate seeds, for garnish
Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan and dust with cocoa powder.

2. In a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, combine the chocolate, butter, and salt and cook until melted and smooth. Stir in the vanilla and remove from heat.

3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the egg yolks with 1/4 cup sugar until creamy, about 1 minute. In a clean, dry bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the egg whites until they just hold their shape. Whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar on high speed until they hold soft peaks.

4. Fold the yolks into the melted chocolate. Fold in half the whites; once combined, fold in the remaining whites. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until barely set in the center, about 25 minutes. Cool completely.

5. Slice a knife or offset spatula around the edges of the pan to release it. Transfer cake to a platter. Slather top of cake with crème fraîche or sour cream. Sprinkle ginger and pomegranate over cake. Slice into thin slivers (it is very rich) and serve.

Serving Size

Serves 8 to 10. Time: 1 hour 15 minutes.

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Gallery: 18 recipes for your Thanksgiving feast

Planning your menu for this holiday season? Get inspired with this collection of recipes for veggie sides, juicy turkey, delicious desserts and more.

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