Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Orange Yoghurt and Polenta cake

There's something a bit sad about calling this a "plain cake". But when a cake is unadorned - no frosting, icing or other cosmetic help, that's what it's called - "Plain" - plain and simple. While other cakes are dressed up in their finery - all flowing frosting and sparkling trimmings like princesses in ball-gowns and tiara's, this one is wearing what is tantamount to a brown twin-set.

It's easy to be overlooked among all of the over-dressed and over-accessorised. But don't let looks fool you.  This cake is as tasty as any of it's couture'd cousins. It's a simple matter of under-promising and over-delivering - if you don't expect much by the look of it, you're even more surprised by how delicious it is in the eating.

The flavours of honey and orange positively sing in this cake. The yoghurt and polenta give it a divinely damp texture.

To be honest, this cake doesn't need any dressing up. It's a classic beauty. I don't think a twin-set ever looked so good.

Orange Yoghurt and Polenta Cake
from Sophie Dahl's Miss Dahl's Voluptuous Delights

100g butter, plus extra for greasing
225g caster sugar
3 eggs
50g spelt flour
50g self-raising flour (I use spelt self-raising flour)
130g polenta
50g almond meal
80g cup full-fat Greek yoghurt
2 tablespoons honey
4 tablespoons orange juice
Finley grated zest of two oranges

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and line the base of a 23cm cake tin with baking paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy then beat in the eggs, one at a time. In a separate bowl, mix the flours together and then add them to the egg-and-sugar mixture. Whisk in the polenta, almond meal, yoghurt, honey, orange juice and orange zest. Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for about 45-60 minutes. Check after 45 minutes by inserting a skewer into the centre of the cake. if it comes out clean, the cake it done. If not, cook for a few minutes longer.

I think there's a new word for plain, "elegant". Perhaps the twin-set will make a come back.


  1. I'm tempted to forgive my earlier polenta mishap and give it another chance in the form of this cake. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  2. Yes Ang, polenta can be a bit hit-and-miss with me as well. But the cake really is delicious. Give it a try and let me know what you think.