Monday, February 2, 2015


I made this Festive Cran-Orange Cake yesterday before the Super Bowl came on television for my husband to take to the tax office at Fort Leavenworth. Because of the snow we started getting Saturday night and the temperature continuing to drop throughout the day and night last night, it looked like they wouldn't be enjoying it until tomorrow. BUT the road behind our house appears clear. So if my husband can get the ice off the windshield of the truck and get out of our neighborhood, he will be going in to "work" today. I know they will enjoy it.

I was attracted to the recipe in Anne Byrn's cookbook, the Cake mix Doctor..., because of the cookies Cranberry Orange Crispies I made recently. I just love the combined tastes of cranberries and orange in baked goods. The fact that it was a Bundt cake also was perfect for "serving" at the tax office.

After chopping the dried cranberries, I was surprised when I cut a slice not to see cranberries throughout the piece. Then I realized it was because the "crust" was full of them. You can see them in the picture below. Since I wasn't sure why Anne included 1/4 cup of sugar in the cake, I decided to use 1/4 cup of stevia instead. 

The cake was heavenly! It will be hard not enjoying another piece later this afternoon.


1         pkg. yellow cake mix with pudding in the mix
1         cup orange juice (I used a 10 - oz bottle of orange juice)
1/2     cup canola oil
1/4     cup sugar (I used 1/4 cup stevia)
4        large eggs
1         cup chopped sweetened dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a tube pan. (See tip below.)

Combine the cake mix, orange juice, oil, sugar, and eggs in a large mixing bowl for 1 minute on low. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula.

Increase the speed to medium and beat batter for 2 more minutes.

Fold in the cranberries.

Pour the batter in the pan.

Bake for 45 - 47 minutes until cake is golden brown and the sides are just starting to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Remove the cake from the oven and place on wire rack to cool for 20 minutes. 

If necessary, run a knife around the edge of the cake to loosen it before removing it from the pan to continue cooling for 30 more minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the ....


1       cup of powdered sugar, sifted
3      tablespoons orange juice (the rest of the 10 - oz bottle of orange juice)
1       teaspoon Valencia orange peel

Combine the powdered sugar and orange juice in a small mixing bowl with a wooden spoon until smooth.

Add the orange peel.

Place cake on serving plate and spoon the glaze over the cake so that it drips down the sides and into the center.

Store the cake under a glass cake cover or covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to a week. Also freezes well wrapped in aluminum foil.


Anne Byrn shared this recipe from Cindy Young of Cincinnati who tested recipes for Duncan Hines for many years. It was used by the test kitchen cooks to "swab the multitude of pans they use for baking cakes". 

So many recipes instruct you to grease and then flour the pans to make the recipe. I decided to give it a try and it worked great! 


2       cups vegetable shortening
1        cup flour

Combine the two ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir with a spoon or beat with an electric mixer. (I used the wooden spoon and it worked perfectly.)

Wipe pan with a small amount using a pastry brush or a sheet of paper towel. I used the latter. 

I folded the paper towel into a smaller piece and spooned about 1 tablespoon of the mixture on it. 

I ran the paper around the bottom of the tube pan. Then I simply rubber the towel up the sides of the pan until it was covered.

Store in a covered container at room temperature for up to 6 months. I used a plastic container I had washed and labeled the lid with the current date and the date from 6 months. 

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