cranberry

Cranberry Kolaches

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

People ask me all the time if I ever have any kitchen failures. Let’s just LOL at that one. As with anything, particularly a craft that is heavily dependent on time, temperature, ingredients, skill, measurements, and, oh yeah, SCIENCE, baking is one of those things that just comes with a mixed bag of results. Some recipes are a win, an instant classic, while others require a million tries. Anytime I step into the kitchen, I’m expecting (read: hoping and praying for) great results, but there’s absolutely zero guarantees. Baking mishaps are a real thing.

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

I set out to make these cranberry kolaches after seeing seeing them freckled about the internet over the past few months. For some time, it seemed as if these European-born pastries were on their way to stardom, and I was bound and determined to wrangle a recipe I could be proud to share on this website. It couldn’t be that hard, right? After all, I’ve made babka! Brioche! The 17-try swirl bread! Cranberry kolaches were bound to be a walk in the park, right?

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

Wrong. After months of cranking out pies and cakes and cookies, my yeasted dough know-how was rusty. I had to revisit this recipe a number of times before I felt like I could make them without the slightest bit of anxiety or kitchen fury, but finally, I landed on something that is really quite delicious. These cranberry kolaches are sweet and tender goodies for the morning hour, and because I logged the man hours on the backend, you get to try these pastries with confidence! Let’s talk about how to make them.

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

The dough for these cranberry kolaches is adapted from my favorite cinnamon bread. Sweet and rich from the addition of sugar, butter, and egg, the dough comes together with milk, activated yeast, and loads of flour. After some time spent rising, small rounds of dough are pinched down and filled with your choice of fillings. First, a fresh cranberry option, tart and only barely sweet, is made on the stovetop with cinnamon and barely-burst berries. Second, a cream cheese and egg-based filling that is subtle in flavor but seriously delish. I personally prefer a combination of the two, but you can bake and fill with whichever you prefer. Finally, to finish off the cranberry kolaches, we sprinkle on a simple crumb made from flour and granulated sugar. The mixture bakes on the pastries for an extra hint of sweet and a bit of texture. They’re divine!

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

As with any of the refined baked good I opt to make, these cranberry kolaches were made with Kerrygold butter. The dough’s intense richness is 100% thanks to the helping of butter found throughout it, and I was incredibly pleased to see how much buttery flavor came through in the finished product. Kerrygold is aways a favorite choice of mine and this recipe is no exception. I hope you’ll give it a try and pick some up for this recipe next time you visit the store!

If you give these cranberry kolaches a try let me know what you think! Many thanks to Kerrygold for sponsoring this post and many thanks to you all for supporting brands that make Wood and Spoon possible. Happy baking!

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

If you like this cranberry kolaches you should try:

Pumpkin Danishes

Breakfast Danish

Brown Sugar Danishes

Cranberry Pear Mini Pop-Tarts

Poached Pear Trifles

 

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Cranberry Kolaches

Cranberry Kolaches by Wood and Spoonn blog. These are little puffy sweat yeast parties filled with a homemade cinnamon and cranberry jam or sugared cream cheese filling. Each bite has a little simple crumble on top and is a great breakfast brunch or dessert option. Learn more about the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com.

These cranberry and cream cheese kolaches are a sweet yeast dough pastry filled with cranberry jam or cream cheese and sprinkled with a crumb topping.

  • Author: Kate
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 240
  • Yield: 24 1x
  • Category: Pastry
Scale

Ingredients

For the dough:

  • 3/4 cup warm milk (not hot or cold)
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 3 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 3 1/4 cups (about 1 lb) all-purpose flour, with more for flouring surfaces
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk, white reserved
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the cranberry filling (will fill approximately 12 kolaches):

  • 11/2 cups cranberries
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water

For the cream cheese filling (Will fill approximately 16 kolaches):

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ of a lightly beaten egg, the other half reserved.
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt

For the streusel:

  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

Instructions

To prepare the dough:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, stir together the warm milk and 2 teaspoons of sugar. Evenly sprinkle the yeast over top of the milk and allow the yeast to activate, about 5 minutes. The mixture should froth and foam slightly. You can stir it gently to make sure all the yeast has been moistened, but if the yeast does not foam, dump it out and start over. Once yeast has been activated, beat 1/2 cup of the flour in to the milk mixture using the paddle attachment. Once combined, add the remaining sugar, eggs, egg yolk, vanilla, and salt, and beat the mixture on medium speed until combined. On low speed, add the remainder of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Once evenly combined, increase the speed to medium (I use speed number 4 on my Kitchen Aid stand mixer) and add the softened butter 1 tablespoon at a time. Scrape the sides of the bowl and then continue to beat on medium speed for an additional 4 minutes. The dough will be quite moist and sticky, and will hold together in long strands when you attempt to scoop it from the bowl.
  2. Lightly grease a large bowl and place the dough inside, covering it tightly with a piece of plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rest until it has approximately doubled in size, about 1-1/2-2 hours. In the meantime, prepare the fillings.

To prepare the cranberry filling:

  1. All of the ingredients in a small saucepan and place over medium low heat. Cook, stirring and squishing the cranberries regularly, until the mixture is thickened and bubbling, about 8-10 minutes. Set aside to cool completely.

To prepare the cream cheese filling:

  1. Use an electric mixer to combine all of the ingredients. Set aside until ready to use.

To prepare the streusel:

  1. Combine the sugar, flour, and salt. Stir in the melted butter until combined and sandy in texture. Set aside until ready to use.

To prepare the kolaches:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roll out the risen dough to 1/2 “ thick. Use a 2” cutter to trim out rounds of dough. Lay them out on parchment-lined baking sheets and cover with a piece of plastic wrap or a tea towel. Set aside to allow the dough rounds to rise for approximately 60 minutes or until fluffy. When risen, use your thumb or a floured bottom of a tablespoon-sized measuring spoon to lightly until rounds into the center of the dough. You should leave about ¼-1/2” border around the edge of each round. Whisk the remaining half of the beaten egg with 1 teaspoon of water and use a pastry brush to lightly brush a thin layer of the mixture on top of each pastry. Fill the hole of each kolache with your filling of choice. Approximately half of them will be cream cheese and half will be cranberry. Sprinkle the undented edges of the pastries with the streusel generously. Bake in the preheated oven for about 18-20 minutes or until the pastries are golden and puffed. Remove from oven to cool slightly prior to consuming.

Notes

  • The cranberry filling is rather tart. You can add 1-2 tablespoons of extra sugar to sweeten it after cooking, if desired.

Cranberry Pear Mini Pop-Tarts

cranberry pear mini pop tarts recipe by the wood and spoon blog by kate wood. this recipe makes mini hand pie type pop-tarts filled with bits of pears (or apples!) and cranberries. They are baked in the oven until golden and flaky and the whole thing gets topped with a powdered sugar glaze. This is a great way to use leftover pie crusts or to make individual pie crusts. Find the recipe at thewoodandspoon.com

If you follow me on Instagram or have known me for longer than ten minutes, you have probably gathered that I have a bit of a sweet tooth. God bless decent genetics and enough spare time to exercise occasionally because otherwise, I’d be in deep. 

Surprisingly though, I’m a bit of a health-nut//control freak when it comes to my daughter, Aimee. It’s really important to me that she eats appropriately (even if mom cheats a little every now and then daily), so she’s typically pretty limited on what she’s allowed to have. 

Truth be told, this is in part due to me not wanting to deal with a picky eater, and even more embarrassingly, because I don’t always want to share my treats. The day she learned to say the word “cookie”, I pretty much melted and knew my days of solo cookie consuming were over. She’s a girl after my own heart.

pastry dough for cranberry pear mini pop tarts

Needless to say, Aimee has not tried a lot of the foods I really loved when I was a kid. Because my diet as a kid was often a mash-up of processed food faves, I was usually the girl you wanted to make a trade with at the lunch table… and for the record, no, the leftovers from your mom’s mystery meat with cream of whatever soup sauce was NOT a plausible trade for my pizza Lunchable. Good try, though. 

One of my faves growing up was Pop-Tarts. If we’re being honest, I still probably love them, it’s just been a minute since I’ve ventured to that region of the grocery store. After becoming confident with my favorite pie crust recipe, I decided it was time to take a stab at the illusive Pop-Tart.

Ya’ll.

Homemade Pop-Tarts, or this recipe at least, is essentially a mini, personal-sized pie with DOUBLE CRUST. [Drops Mic]

cranberry pear mini pop tarts

Hot out of the oven, these teeny pie bites have a buttery, flaky crust, and tart fruit filling that is as diverse as it is easy to make. If you want to make strawberry filling… well, make strawberry filling! If you’re feeling blueberry and lemon… bake away! Quite often I will use stocked up preserves from the summer and spread those on to the pastry- super simple. No one will ever guess it’s just jam.

We usually have a good variety of pears at our grocery store in the winter months, so I opted to try out a pear and cranberry variety. My house smelled like a winter wonderland while these were in the oven, and I really think this flavor combination makes for a grown-up, sophisticated way of saying, “um, yes, I still love Pop-Tarts.”

Both the pastry and the filling can be made in advance and they require very little active kitchen time. In a pinch, you could always try refrigerated pie crust from the grocery store, but you have my word that the homemade route is the best way to go.

Give these tarts a try and let me know what you think! If you discover a new flavor that is next level, please fill me in.

Happy baking! Oh, and for the record… I won’t be sharing these with Aimee.

cranberry pear mini pop tarts

 

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Cranberry Pear Mini Pop- Tarts

An updated take on the classic pastry, these cranberry-pear mini pop-tarts include a flaky crust and tart cranberry pear filling that is delicious treat to serve to kids and adults alike!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x
Scale

Ingredients

For the filling

  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 cup finely diced pear (I used Bartlett but any firm pear for baking will do)
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 tsp. corn starch
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the pastry

  • 2 1/4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 5 Tbsp. ice water

Instructions

To prepare the filling

  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan.
  2. Combine all other ingredients and add to the pan with the butter. Stir frequently over medium heat until cranberries have burst and filling is thick and somewhat uniform, about 15 minutes. Allow to cool in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.

To prepare the pastry

  1. Combine flour, salt and sugar in a medium sized bowl.
  2. Cut in butter and shortening with a pastry cutter or fork until it is the consistency of a course meal with small, pea-sized chunks of butter throughout. Add water one tablespoon at a time, tossing gently until pastry comes together in moist clumps. Divide dough in half and pat into two round, flat disks. Wrap with Saran wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

To assemble

  1. Roll out one disk of pastry on to a floured surface to 1/4″ thickness. Using a 3″ biscuit cutter, gently cut rounds of dough. Each Pop-Tart will require two rounds (one for top and one for bottom).
  2. Place one tablespoon of cooled filling on top of half of the rounds.
  3. Top the filled rounds with a second circle of of crust and use a fork to crimp the edges. Vent the top of each rectangle by poking the top of the pastry with a fork 2-3 times. Freeze the pop tarts on the baking sheet for at least 2 hours or up to a week.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Bake the tarts, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool and top with sifted powdered sugar or a glaze of choice.

Notes

  • I used a simple powdered sugar glaze for the pop-tarts pictured, but feel free to get creative!