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Flying Pickles Lemon Polenta Cake

Lemon Polenta Cake

Published On: 04.07.2013

At last! The great British summer is here! After the long hard winter, then spring (no, winter), spring again (um, sorry, but have you noticed the snow?), then spring again (definitely, no doubt about it this time), the long-awaited summer months have finally arrived.

The tantalising promises of the morning sun’s rays, dreams of hazy afternoons in hammocks, meandering into balmy evenings with barbeques and the odd glass of our favourite tipple with friends; these things are always, in a quinessentially English way, always just around the corner, just down the garden path, just out of reach. Just this last low pressure system to blow our socks off, we say, and we’re home-free.


A delicious slice of homemade polenta cake and a cup of teaAnd that’s why we Love It! It’s a symbol of the British bulldog fighting spirit, a testament to our stoicism and determination. For surely only the most determined stoic could sit out what seems to be the last 8 YEARS of nuclear winter; Royal Weddings and Jubilees aside, of course.

Our sheer bloody-mindedness ensures we enjoy ourselves, no matter what Mother Nature decides to dish out, kind and gentle maiden that she is (when she not baring her teeth and snarling at us, that is), and this has helped to shape our summer food.

Lemon Polenta Cake is a perfect example of our versatility through adversity. The taste is all about fresh summery lemon, but is sensibly backed up with its reassuring sticky sweetness and the heartiness of the polenta. All this and gluten free too (though you wouldn’t believe it)! This cake goes down just as well at a garden party on THE perfect high-summer day as it does sheltering behind a moorland rock in a Force Five gale wondering when summer is going to begin.


Cake mixture:

  • 200g soft butter
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 200g ground almonds
  • 100g polenta
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder (gluten-free, if required)
  • 3 eggs
  • Zest of 2 lemons (Save the juice)
  • Syrup:
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 125g icing sugar


Flying Pickles Lemon Polenta Cake imageInstructions :

  1. Line the base of cake tin with baking parchment and grease sides lightly with butter.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade.
  3. Beat the butter and sugar till pale and whipped.
  4. Mix together the almonds, polenta and baking powder and stir some of this into the butter/sugar mixture,
  5. followed by 1 egg, then alternate dry ingredients and eggs, stirring all the while.
  6. Finally, stir in the lemon zest and spoon into prepared tin and bake in oven for about 40 minutes.
  7. It may seem wobbly but, if the cake is cooked, a cake tester should come out cleanish and, most significantly, the edges of the cake will have begun to shrink away from the sides of the tin. Remove to wire cooling rack, but leave in its tin.
  8. Make the syrup by boiling together the lemon juice and icing sugar in a smallish saucepan. Once the icing sugar is dissolved into the juice, you’re done.
  9. Prick the top of the cake all over with a cocktail stick, pour the warm syrup over the cake, and leave to cool before taking it out of its tin.

Posted by: Jane

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