Have you ever smelled something and the scent instantly transported you to a long ago memory? Noxzema does that for me. I smell it and immediately my mind is flooded with childhood recollections of sandy beaches and sunburns. Isn't it remarkable how God engineered us so that scents and tastes can bring to mind such vivid memories?
One bite of this cake is a reminiscent mouthful of Christmas past. Seriously, it is the flavor of Christmas with its tangy orange zest, fresh cranberries and spicy overtones. The cranberries give it a zing like the crisp winter air. Rather poetic I know but really, it is the flavor of the holidays I think. Try it and let me know what you think.
This is one of those cakes that really taste even better the day after you make it and the flavors have all gotten cozy with each other so don't be afraid to make it up ahead of time!
* Orange zest...smells so good!
** If you can't find mascarpone cheese you can use 1/2 cup sour cream.
***My family enjoyed the cake but found the cranberries a little too tart for their liking. I figure the next time I make this I may reduce the amount down or leave them out all together.