Oh, how I love this time of year. Cool, crisp days with the brightest blue skies. The summer masses have long gone and those of us lucky enough to call this land of salt and sand home reemerge to enjoy the season's beauty.One such pretty spot is the Milestone Cranberry Bog, stewarded by the Nantucket Conservation Foundation. This past weekend they held their annual Cranberry Festival highlighting the organic cranberry harvest. The flooded bogs were a striking crimson hue against a bright blue open sky.
Today, alas, was dark cold and rainy. But we warmed up inside with cranberry orange walnut corn cake. Just a slight variation from the blueberry skillet corn cake. Yummy tart and citrusy deliciousness!
1 1/4 cup fine ground corn meal
1/2 cup stone ground whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of sea salt (optional)
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon grade B maple syrup
1 cup unsweetened soy milk
Zest of 1 medium orange
Juice from 1/2 of zested orange
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Seeds from 1 vanilla bean
1/2 cup fresh cranberries cut in quarters
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons canola oil for coating skillet
Place cast iron skillet on rack in lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees F.
Whisk together cornmeal, flour, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Whisk all wet ingredients, zest and vanilla seeds in separate bowl. Combine wet into dry until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in cranberries and walnuts.
Using oven mitts carefully remove hot skillet from oven and swirl canola oil around pan to coat the bottom. Pour batter into skillet and gently shake to spread evenly. You should hear it sizzling.
Return skillet to oven and bake for 30 minutes. Top should be golden brown and cracking is ok. Cool slightly and serve warm or at room temperature.