Lemon Polenta Cake (Gluten-Free and Dairy Free)

My mother-in-law often makes this rich and sharp tasting cake for me. So it was time to recreate the magic in my own kitchen. I’ve included the recipe for the syrup but I don’t think it needs it. This recipe makes a medium sized that serves 8 people if cut into small pieces (you don’t need much as it’s quite dense).

200g of butter or dairy-free margarine, plus a bit more for greasing the tin

200g of caster sugar
200g of ground almonds (almond meal)
100g of fine polenta/cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder (gluten-free)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
Zest 2 lemons (if you want to make a syrup, save the juice)

The juice of 2 lemons

125g of icing sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF).
2. Line the base of your cake tin (I used a 23cm springform round cake tin) with baking paper and grease its sides lightly.

3. Beat the butter/dairy-free margarine and sugar till pale and whipped, either by hand in a bowl with a wooden spoon or using a food processor/mixer.
4. Mix together the almond meal, polenta and baking powder in a separate bowl.
5. Slowly stir this dry mixture, alternating with 1 egg at a time, into the butter-sugar mixture.
6. Stir in the lemon zest.
7. Pour the mixture into your prepared tin and bake in the oven for about 40 minutes.

Test that the cake is ready by poking a skewer through it’s centre, it should come out clean. Another way to test is if the edges of the cake have shrunk away from the sides of the cake tin.
If you want syrup, make the syrup by boiling together the lemon juice and icing sugar in a saucepan. Once the icing sugar has dissolved into the juice, remove from the heat.

8. Remove from the oven. If you’ve made syrup, pour the warm syrup over the cake.
9. Leave the cake to cool in its tin before moving on to a serving plate.

I served my cake with cashew cream.

SOURCE: Nigella Lawson


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