Glazed Polenta & Almond Cake with Stewed Lemons

IMG_8024The blackberries are dripping off the bushes. The air is heavy with their scent as I walk by, reminding me that I have to get serious about picking them while they’re still plump and sweet. This summer has been so busy; add to that the heat and mosquitoes, and I haven’t really felt the urge to do much picking.

While I still have time for the blackberries, the Transparent Apples are just about done, the horses and cattle getting most of them so far. I need to go out and get enough for half a dozen pies, as they are my favourite pie apples. Mix them with the blackberries, and I’m over the moon! In the cold, dark days of winter, pulling a pie filled with summer fruit from the freezer, and cooking it, not only fills the house with summer smells, but gives us one more chance to eat that sweet summer goodness.

Picking for pies and freezing is a commitment of time that I need to build into an already busy day. But to pick a few cups takes no time at all, to enjoy with ice cream or a baked dessert like this wonderful, very grown up, polenta & almond cake. This citrusy version is a perfect complement to the summer berry crop.

Click here for printable version.


4 small, organic lemons (organic lemons tend to be smaller than main stream ones, use only 3 if your lemons are large)

5 oz butter – cut into 1” pieces, let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes

3 extra large eggs

1½ c polenta

2 c ground almonds

1½ t baking powder

1¼ c packed golden sugar


¾ c packed golden sugar

Juice of 1 lemon (about ¼ c)


Put the lemons into a saucepan wide enough to hold all the lemons in one layer.IMG_7998

Cover with cold water, and bring to a boil.

Drain, cover again with more cold water, and bring back to the boil.

Let simmer over low heat for about an hour, until the lemons are softened. Add more water if needed.

Drain the lemons, and let cool on a plate.IMG_7999

Preheat the oven to 350°

Lightly grease a 9” cake pan or deep pie plate with butter.

Cut the lemons in half, and remove any pits. Be sure to leave any juice or pulp on the plate.IMG_8001

Put the lemons into the bowl of a processor.

Process until puréed

Add in the eggs and butter, processing until fairly smooth.IMG_8003

In a bowl, mix the polenta with the almonds, baking powder and sugar.

Mix well.IMG_8004

Add to the wet ingredients in the processor.

Process until it is a soft batter.

Spoon all the batter into the pan, scraping out the bowl thoroughly.IMG_8009

Bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown. The cake will pull away from the sides of the pan when done.

Mix the sugar and lemon juice for the glaze.

Once the cake is out of the oven, poke holes, 1” apart, over the top using a skewer.IMG_8012

Gently pour the glaze over the top.IMG_8014

IMG_8015Let cool completely.

Serve with Berry Compote and whipped cream.




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