Polenta, Almond & Lemon Cake

PREP TIME: 20mins


Torta di Polenta, Mandorle e Limone.

Ooh how I love this cake!

It might be the chewy crust, deep caramelised flavour or the citrusy kick. Or it might just be the fact that this gluten-free cake is super EASY to make!

I served this at a supperclub I hosted recently and it went down a treat.

Getting Ahead: because the cake is so moist it keeps well for a few days, if it lasts that long.

Seasonal Swaps: you can use orange instead of lemon.

Serving Suggestion:

Lovely with some whipped creme fraiche (recipe below) on the side and some toasted flaked almonds.

What you'll need:

a 20cm cake tin, baking paper, stand mixer or an electric hand mixer.


  • 225g unsalted butter, softened
  • 225g castor sugar
  • 225g almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • juice & zest of 1 lemon
  • 120g fine polenta
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt

Whipped Creme Fraiche

  • 2 cups whipping cream/single cream
  • 1 cup creme fraiche
  • 1/4 cup sifted icing sugar
  • zest 1 lemon

Toasted Almonds

  • 1 cup flaked almonds


  1. Preheat the oven to 160c.
  2. NB: Butter and flour the cake tin  – the cake tends to stick, so this a very important step. Remember to tip the cake tin upside down after flouring to get rid of excess flour.
  3. Add the flaked almond to a small baking tray and roast in the oven until golden – about 10minutes, set aside.
  4. Beat the butter & sugar together until light, pale and fluffy. It should look like mousse.
  5. Beat in the eggs, one at a time and bring the mixture together before adding the next egg. (see kitchen note) until all the eggs are added. Now add your vanilla extract.
  6. Fold in the polenta, almond flour, baking powder and pinch of salt. Trying to be a bit gentle here with the folding, think gentle ‘turning’ rather than vigorous whisking making sure everything is well incorporated.
  7. Spoon into the prepared tin and bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes until the cake is set by checking with a skewer in the middle of the tart. If cake mixture appears on the skewer, return the cake to the oven for an extra 10minutes. The cake will be a deep brown on top. Remove, let it cool for 15 minutes before removing from the cake tin. Cool on a wire rack.
  8. Meanwhile, whip the cream and icing sugar until stiff peaks. Add the creme fraiche to a large bowl, fold in the cream and add the lemon zest. Taste and season with more zest or icing sugar (always sifted) a teaspoon at a time. We are looking for a balance between sour (creme fraiche) and sweet.

Kitchen Notes:

After creaming the butter and sugar together until fluffy and pale it is time to add the eggs. The fat in the butter will not like the additions of more fat (ie the eggs) that is why we add (1) room temperature eggs and (2) one at a time, giving the butter time to absorb the egg fully into the mixture before we add the rest of the eggs (also one by one).

When the first egg is added the mixture will look like scrambled eggs and might appear to have ‘split’, fear not, continue to beat the mixture until it looks like a well incorporated batter.

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