Ok, it’s official. I’m now in LOVE with polenta cakes. My recent visit to Petersham Nurseries and an impulse rhubarb purchase from the supermarket spurred me on to try Nigel Slater’s rhubarb cinnamon polenta cake recipe, which I got from The Guardian online. I normally play around with recipes but wanted this to be the same, even keeping in the orange zest that I might have omitted before.
The cake was a bit of a nightmare – the batter is very sticky and I used the wrong size cake tin at first. So definitely make sure you use a 20cm tin, no bigger. I also worried because I didn’t drain the rhubarb in a colander after taking it out of the roasting dish but it didn’t matter. I ended up with a delicious, moist, crunchy, course, sweet delight.
For the filling:
50g golden caster sugar
4 tbsp water
For the crust:
125g coarse polenta
200g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
a pinch of ground cinnamon
150g golden caster sugar
grated zest of a small orange
1 large egg
2-4 tbsp milk
1 tbsp light muscovado sugar
Preheat oven to 180C/gas mark 4.
1. Cut each rhubarb stem into two or three pieces and put them in a baking dish
2. Scatter over the sugar and water, and bake for 30-40 minutes until the rhubarb is soft but still retains its shape
3. Put the polenta, flour, baking powder, cinnamon and caster sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Add the grated zest and the butter, cut into smallish pieces, then blitz for a few seconds till you have something that resembles breadcrumbs
4. Beat egg and milk in a small bowl and add to the crumb mixture. Blitz until just combined
5. Press about two-thirds of the mixture into the cake tin, pushing it a couple of centimeters up the sides with a floured spoon
6. Place the rhubarb on top, leaving a small rim around the edge uncovered and cover with the remaining batter
7. Scatter over the light muscovado sugar
8. Bake on the hot baking sheet for 45 minutes
9. Leave to cool before removing from tin and serve with the juice left over from the rhubarb
I love polenta in crusts, what a wonderful recipe.
Thank you – well, thank Nigel, ha.
It really is delicious – polenta makes a cake so so so delicious and gives it an amazing texture.
What a lovely recipe you have there!
Thanks. Nigel Slaters recipes are always amazing. You should try it!