Mini Almond Cranberry Bundt Cakes with Mascarpone Frosting are the perfect festive dessert for the holiday season. A hefty dose of almond paste gives these cakes an intense almond flavor and helps keep them moist. Chopped fresh cranberries not only add little bursts of tartness, but a gorgeous visual as well. The beautiful red color of cranberries just can’t be beat. They were absolutely made for Christmas. Almond is my absolute favorite flavor for cake. We served almond pound cake at our wedding and this fabulous Almond Cake with Amaretto Frosting was my very first post on this blog. I find I can’t let a Christmas season go by without making some sort of almond cake. To me almond cake to be absolutely, positively heavenly. A slightly sweet mascarpone frosting gives a beautiful and rich finishing touch to these cakes, but they are absolutely delicious with no frosting. I made individual cakes in a Bundtlette Pan but you could also make 1 big Bundt cake. I made 6 mini-Bundts and used the remaining batter to make mini-muffins which were also delicious. The recipe I adapted supposedly yields 12 mini-Bundt cakes but to me it didn’t quite look like there was enough batter for 12. Ten is probably more like it.
- 6¾ oz. (1½ cups) all-purpose flour; more for pan
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened; more for pan
- 7 oz. (about ⅔ cup) almond paste (not marzipan)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup milk, at room temperature
- 1 cup fresh cranberries, rinsed and coarsely chopped
- Confectioners' sugar for dusting
- 8 oz. Mascarpone, at room temperature
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon Amaretto
- ¼ cup confectioners' sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with an oven rack in the center.
- Butter and flour 10 mini Bundt pans or 1 large Bundt pan. Tap out excess flour.
- In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Using an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and almond paste on medium speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Beat in eggs 1 at a time, stopping between each addition to scrape down sides of bowl.
- Beat in vanilla.
- Turn mixer to low speed and add in flour mixture and milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stop mixer halfway through to scrape down sides of bowl.
- Turn mixer to medium speed and beat until batter is smooth, about 20 seconds.
- Fold in cranberries.
- Spoon batter into prepared pans (or pan) and spread evenly with a rubber spatula.
- Bake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 20 minutes for small cakes and 40 to 50 minutes for large cake.
- Place pan on a rack to cool for 20 minutes. Invert pan onto rack to remove cakes.
- For frosting, using an electric mixer with whisk attachment, beat mascarpone, heavy cream, and amaretto until combined and smooth.
- With mixer on low add in confectioners' sugar then turn to medium-high until thickened. Place in a pastry bag and fill centers of cakes with frosting. If making a large cake, top each slice with a mound of frosting when serving.
- Dust with powdered sugar.
Frosting should be refrigerated until ready to serve.
Recipe Source: adapted from Fine Cooking
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