Sunday, August 22, 2010

Cranberry - Orange Crumb Bars

After many months in the box, I finally took out my birthday present from my hubby. Today was the day that I graduated from the minor leagues to the majors. I went from using my long time cherished friend, the Olympus “point and shoot” to what I call, my “big girl camera”. Back in June, my husband gave me a Sony a300 DSLR camera for my birthday. I guess with being so busy and use to my current photo taking habits, I did not get around to opening the box until today.

My hubby, who has done photography for a hundred years, was my personal teacher today. He went through the basics of the camera and how to take a basic photo. Today was lesson number one and I can hardly wait for lesson number two. Oh my gosh, what fun it was to hear that fast clicking noise and zooming in and out to grab the perfect photo. When I loaded the memory card to my computer and viewed the photos of the Cranberry - Orange Crumb Bars, I almost could not believe my eyes – the photos were so much more crisp, vivid and beautiful. So much more to learn, but I feel that I am now on my way.  Today is a great day!

Now onto these wonderful Cranberry – Orange Crumb Bars. You are probably thinking how does she have cranberries in August? Back in the late winter, I purchased three or four bags of fresh cranberries and froze them. I wanted to be able to enjoy these tart little nuggets year round. I saw a recipe on All Recipes for blueberry crumb bars and decided to make them my own. As you can see, the foundation is the same but the entire bar is unique. If you do not have frozen cranberries, try blueberries, blackberries or raspberries. They turned out beautifully and will be on my holiday treat list of things to make.

Cranberry – Orange Crumb Bars

Crumb Mixture
1 C. Sugar
1 C. Butter
1 t. Baking Powder
½ t. Salt
2 t. Vanilla
1 Egg
3 C. Flour
Zest of one orange

3 C. Fresh/Frozen Cranberries
1 T. Cornstarch
½ C. Sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

In an electric mixer, cream the butter together until smooth. Add the sugar, baking powder, salt and vanilla and cream together. Then add the egg and beat until combined. Add the zest of the orange and mix. Slowly add the flour one cup at a time until combined. Mixture will be crumbly.

Use a 9 x 13 pan and spray with non-stick cooking spray. I use the Crisco one with flour and oil. Divide the mixture in half and spread the first half on the bottom of the pan. It will be thin.

In a medium bowl, add the cranberries and cornstarch together and combine. Spread over the pan with the pressed crumb mixture. Sprinkle the ½ cup of sugar over the entire pan. Take the remaining crumb mixture and sprinkle over the top, leaving small areas where there is no crumb topping.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool. Cut into desired sized pieces.


  1. Those cranberry-orange bars look delicious. I love bar cookies. I'm glad I'm not the only one getting to know a new camera... It's a little intimidating. My old faithful Kodak was hard to retire too!

  2. Cramberry and Orange? Wonderful!! These bars look so yummy! Good luck with the new camera. The improvements are quick at the beginning but it does take time to learn. I got my first manual camera 3 months ago but I still have so much to learn. It's a lot of fun!

  3. @ Eileen - It is fun getting a new camera and I feel like I am now in 2010. LOL Good luck to you!!

    @ Sara - I am just thrilled with the quick progress in one day. I have big aspirations and know that it will take time - I look forward to learning. Good luck to you and have fun. :)

  4. Wow Lisa, your cranberry orange bars look so good. Congratulations on your new camera, you're fortunate to have someone to help you learn how to take nice photos. Have fun with it, can't wait to see all your new pics:-)

  5. Looks like you had a successful photography lesson! Gorgeous bars.

  6. Your bars look wonderful! I happen to have some frozen cranberries in my freezer and I think they have just found a new home.
    I've been hesitant to buy a new one just because I have no idea how to use them. Enjoy lesson number two!

  7. Lisa, congrats on using your new camera! The crumb bars are gorgeous? So sweet of your husband to give you this gift and to teach you to use it to boot! Now we use the same camera. :-)

    I also bought an extra bag of cranberries and I've been meaning to use it but it hasn't happened. Even thought of it today but ended up using apples. I'll have to give this recipe of yours a try. The bars look so, so good!

    BTW, I made bruschetta from my lovely new cookbook (Thanks!) so you'll be seeing the post later this week. :-)

  8. Lisa these look so amazing...and wow what a birthday gift :) Very lovely shots here already, have fun exploring and don't forget to share :)

  9. I am jealous! I want your camera! bravo on the pics.

  10. The pictures are simply a feast for the eyes! A very successful photography lesson!

    The cranberry bars would be really great to go with some afternoon tea.

  11. Awesome pictures and bars! I love the cranberry-orange combination.

  12. Oh goodness! These look great!

  13. How indescribably fun to get a new camera! I did the exact same thing with my first dslr. It was months before I finally started using it because it was so scary to me at first from my point-and-shoot. You're going to love your new toy! The image of the cranberry bars turned out fantastic!

    Fun to reach in the freezer and use something that you've saved for later that's not as easily attainable in the stores without paying an arm and a leg. Good recipe and looking fwd to using it w/my cranberry stash too! ;)

  14. Congrats on using your new DSLR camera. I have a Nikon and I love it.

    Love these orange cranberry bars. I am thinking a really good cup of hot coffee, and a couple of these bars and life will be good.

    Thanks for sharing.

  15. These look amazing, def. going to add this to my baking list!

    d e g a i n e

  16. Congrats on your birthday present, the pics look fab! This recipe for these bars is also FAB, cranberries and orange go so well together and these bars sound wonderful.

  17. These look yummy and not too hard... Thank you!


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