Nov 30, 2023 | Ari's Favorites, Great Grains

Cranberry Pecan Bread from the Bakehouse

A whole lot of tasty holiday eating.

By Ari Weinzweig

Brad Hedeman, long-time marketing manager at Mail Order and a wonderful writer, once called the Cranberry Pecan bread from the Bakehouse the “kissing cousin to our extremely popular Pecan Raisin Bread.” I still smile every time I think about that image. Over the years, the Cranberry Pecan has become one of the most well loved of Zingerman’s classics for the fall season. (In recent years, it’s also part of our popular “Christmas in July” at the Bakehouse). Each handmade loaf has almost half a pound of dried cranberries and pecans packed into it. The naturally leavened dough is made with organic flour, filtered water, sea salt, pecans, and dried cranberries (no added sugar, shortening, or oil) and has a long rise time (18 hours!). The result is chewy, dense, not super sweet, and terrifically tasty. 

Cranberries, by the way, are native to both the Americas and Europe. Many believe that in New England they were introduced to Europeans by Algonquian people—the name for the berry in Narragansett is sasemineash. The Europeans called them cranberries, from the German, but also referred to them as bearberries, which appeals enormously to my alliterative way of being in the world. The loaf is as dense and intense as our Pecan Raisin, and you can use it in all the same ways. Enjoy it toasted, with butter or Creamery Cream Cheese. Use it as a base for chicken salad sandwiches. The bread is also terrific toasted and topped with olive oil, with Creamery’s marvelous Manchester cheese, or with some Rogue River Blue Cheese (at the Deli and Creamery). Whole loaves of the Cranberry Pecan are a wonderful way to add a bit of beauty to your dining table, too. If you’re looking for a way to carry classic seasonal flavors into your holiday dining, this is a lovely, low-key way to do it! Pick up a loaf during the months of November and December at the Roadhouse, the Roadshow, or the Bakehouse!