Lemon and Honey Polenta Cake

11221577_930038320400085_588745345756165927_nI received a lovely gift of a Gluten Free cooking workshop at Cooks Academy last year. It was very hands on and we made everything from soda bread to delicious pizza. One of the highlights for me was a very moreish lemon polenta cake. I am a sucker for zingy citrus flavours and the polenta cake was exactly that! Sadly it’s taken me this long to actually make it again!

You’ve probably heard of Polenta but do you know what it is? Polenta hails from Italy! It’s a corn variety and is generally cheap to source. I love the grittiness it gives this cake recipe, a unique texture!

In this recipe I’ve used coconut sugar which can be sourced from most supermarkets now (Woo-hoo breakthrough!). Don’t be alarmed that it gives the cake a darker appearance than normal!




  • 1 cups (200 grams) soft unsalted butter (plus some for greasing)
  • 1 cup ( 200 grams) caster sugar 
  • 1 cup (200 grams) ground almonds 
  • 100 grams fine polenta (or cornmeal)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder (see note below)
  • large eggs 
  • zest of  lemons (save juice for syrup)

Honey Syrup

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • Juice of 1 lemon


  1. Grease a 9 inch springform cake tin lightly with butter or line with parchment paper.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  3. Beat the butter and sugar until it’s pale and consistency is smooth. You can do this either by hand or using a mixer.
  4. Mix together the almonds, polenta and baking powder, and beat some of this into the butter/sugar mixture, mix in 1 egg, then alternate dry ingredients and egg mix. Ensure you are constantly beating.
  5. Finally, mix in the lemon zest and transfer the mixture into your prepared tin and bake for about 40 minutes.
  6. Important note: It may seem wobbly but, if the cake is cooked, a toothpick should come out clean and the edges of the cake will have begun to shrink away from the sides of the tin.
  7. Remove from the oven to a wire cooling rack.

To make syrup

  1. Make the syrup by boiling together the lemon juice and honey in a small saucepan.
  2. Prick the top of the cake with a toothpick and pour this syrup slowly and evenly over the top of the cake. (keep in the pan)
  3. Allow the cake to soak up the syrup (about 15-20 minutes). Remove from the pan and serve.



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