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Serves 8 to 10
1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter3/4 cup packed light brown sugar3/4 pound cranberries11/2 cups flour2 teaspoons baking powder1/4 teaspoon salt1 cup granulated sugar2 egg yolks1 teaspoon plus a few drops vanilla extract1/2 cup milk2 egg whites1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar1 cup heavy cream1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
Place 4 tablespoons of the butter and the brown sugar in a 9-inch cake pan over medium heat, stirring until the sugar is melted, 1 minute. Swirl to coat the sides with the butter. Place the cranberries on top of the melted butter and sugar.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. In a bowl, toss together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cream the remaining 8 tablespoons butter and the sugar together in another bowl. Add the egg yolks to the creamed mixture, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 teaspoon of the vanilla and mix well. Add the milk alternately with the dry ingredients, folding well after each addition.
Beat the egg whites to soft peaks. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat until the peaks hold their shape. Fold the whites into the cake batter. Spread the batter over the fruit in the cake pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes.
Remove the cake from the oven and run a small knife around the edge of the pan. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes. Invert the cake onto a serving platter and let it sit for another 5 minutes with the pan on the top. Remove the pan.
Whip the cream to soft peaks. Add a few drops of vanilla and the confectioners' sugar and mix.Serve slices of cake with the softly whipped cream.
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