Cranberry Shortbread Cake

I made this for a dinner party on Christmas eve, but I think it works well as an everyday cake. The cake has three distinct textures – First, you bite into the crunchy and sugary shortbread. Next, your teeth sinks into the moist jam layer before finishing at the cake layer at the bottom. The tartness of the cranberry jam perfectly balances the sugary crust of the shortbread. I served this with vanilla ice cream but it’s perfect on its own too.

Cranberry Shortbread Cake
Serves 8 to 10
Adapted from Baking from my home to yours

Ingredients for cranberry jam:
1 large orange
1/4 cup orange juice
12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
3/4 cup sugar


  1. Grate the zest of one orange into a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan.
  2. Remove the peel and pith and segment the orange between membranes. Add the orange segments into the saucepan.
  3. Reserve the juice from the orange. If it does not form 1/4 cup, top up with more orange juice.
  4. Put the cranberries and sugar into the pan and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  5. Continue stirring for 5 – 8 minutes, until the cranberries pop and your spoon leaves tracks.
  6. Scrape the jam into a bowl and cool to room temperature.

Ingredients for the cake:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
6.5 oz unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp sugar (for dusting)


  1. Mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. Using a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed till soft and smooth.
  3. Add sugar and continue beating till it is well-combined.
  4. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add in the egg and yolk, beating until they are well incorporated.
  5. Beat in the vanilla extract.
  6. Add in the flour mixture in two parts, mixing only until it is just incorporated. Do not overmix.
  7. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and divide it into half. Pat each into a disk and wrap the disks up in plastic.
  8. Refrigerate each disk for 15 to 30 minutes (or refrigerate it overnight and thaw it for 20 minutes the next day before using).
  9. Preheat the oven to 350ºF while dough is chilling.
  10. Butter a non-stick 9-inch springform pan and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment.
  11. Roll out one disk to the size of the springform and press it lightly into the pan.
  12. Spread the cranberry jam evenly over the dough.
  13. Roll the second piece of dough to the size of the pan and carefully invert it onto the filling.
  14. Brush the top lightly with water and sprinkle with 2 tsp of sugar.
  15. Bake for 40 minutes, until the top of the cake is golden brown.
  16. Transfer onto a cooling rack to cool for 20 minutes in the pan, before removing the sides and allowing it to cool to room temperature.
  17. Serve at room temperature.


  1. The cranberry jam filling sounds wonderful, an excellent cake!

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