When I first tasted this version of Polenta Cake a glimmer of a grin came over my face. It reminded me of a similar type of cake my grandmother would make during the holidays. It has the lushness of true polenta, the texture of a very rich cornbread and a slight sweetness. With each bite memories of my youth swirled around me. Though I loved each and every morsel, I felt something was missing. After playing with the recipe for a few months I came to the conclusion it was missing "freshness" -- what better way to add "freshness" than with a hint of lemon!
Due to the fact this cake is only slightly sweet, it will go perfectly with some freshly sliced fruit, a fruit compote or a simple scoop of ice cream. During the height of strawberry season we use this cake as the base for strawberries and cream.
Ingredients needed to make Lemon Polenta Cake (makes 1 loaf):
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 lemon, zest only and finely grated
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees and line the bottom of a loaf pan with parchment paper.
- Into a mixer with a paddle attachment, cream the sugar and butter until light and creamy.
- Add the eggs and beat until well combined.
- Add the sour cream and lemon zest and beat 2 minutes.
- Into the butter mixture, add all the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until just combined. This is important to get the right texture. If you beat the dry ingredients into the cream mixture your cake will be too dense.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.
- Place in the oven and bake 60 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan 5 minutes.
- Remove from the pan and let cool on a rack.
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