A well-travelled cake

Food & Cooking
Polenta and Olive Oil Orange Cake

Polenta and Olive Oil Orange Cake

A couple of months ago, our friends Sue and Kevin went to see some friends for a meal.  Their friends produced a very fine cake, so they asked for the recipe.

A few weeks ago, we went to see our friends Sue and Kevin for a meal. They produced a very fine cake, so we asked for the recipe.

The other evening, our friends Jonet and Richard came round for a meal.  We produced a very fine cake, so they asked for the recipe.

This is the cake.  This is the recipe.  It’s a little unusual, it’s easy to make, and it works well – as we all discovered – as a pudding.  It’s also dairy and gluten-free, which can come in handy too.

Polenta and Olive Oil Orange cake


2-3 large oranges

300 g. golden caster sugar

250 g. fine ground polenta

200 g. ground almonds

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

Pinch salt

4 eggs, beaten

225 ml. olive oil

zest of 1 orange

  1. Oven 170 degrees centigrade.
  2. Grease and line tin (equivalent of 2 lb. loaf tin, or 20 cm. round tin).
  3. Peel and slice oranges and arrange, overlapping, on base
  4. Combine all dry ingredients.
  5. Beat eggs and add to mixture.
  6. Add the oil and combine all ingredients
  7. Pour the thick batter over oranges.
  8. Place on baking tray and bake 75-90 mins.
  9. Allow to cool before inverting on plate.

The cake works well on its own, but is even better with, say, a handful of raspberries and some Jersey cream.

Now.  Who will you share the recipe with?

10 thoughts on “A well-travelled cake

  1. Sounds good – I make a very similar cake with lemon, polenta and pear but will look forward to trying the orange version when oranges are back in season. Only one thing though – cream (yes, even Jersey cream 🙂 ) with an olive oil based cake would just be a huge no-no for me and would spoil both the cake and the cream!


    1. Oh, that’s interesting. Why? I found they complemented each other. I’ve tried nothing-at-all – pretty good – but where there’s fruit-on-the side involved too, I gave Greek yoghourt or crème fraîche a go, and neither worked so well for me as thick cream did. Taste is a fickle thing! But I wouldn’t mind your pear and lemon version. Sounds good.


  2. Good heavens–this MUST be a very fine cake, with a travel history like that! Thanks for using the weight measurements in the recipe–my scale will work in grams. Is golden caster sugar similar to what Americans call brown sugar, do you know?


    1. I doubt it. We have brown sugar too, which is soft. Caster sugar, whether golden or the traditional white, is tiny crystals. White will do fine. I just prefer the less-refined golden.


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