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Monday, 1 April 2013

Lemon polenta cake with rosemary syrup

I had forgotten about this recipe until I read about Miss Lady Bug's recipe for Rosemary Honey on her website, which sounds divine but I have not yet got around to trying. The rosemary syrup here is really easy to make and I'm sure could be used to top or drizzle over many different cakes, desserts, ice cream or pancakes.

I originally found this recipe on the Selfsufficientish forum but have no idea who to credit for it. I guess it's a recipe which has been doing the rounds for years.


175g polenta (fine cornmeal)
50g plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
5 tbsp plain yoghurt
5tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil (plus extra for greasing)
grated rind of 2 lemons
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 eggs, plus 2 egg whites
400g caster sugar
2 branches fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas Mark 4/Fan oven 160 C.

Sift the polenta, flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Place the yoghurt, oil, lemon rind and juice into a jug and stir until combined.

In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and egg whites with half of the sugar for a few minutes until creamy. Beat in the yoghurt mixture until smooth and then fold in the dry ingredients until just combined - do not over-mix.

Batter mixture into a 1.2 litre/2 pint lightly-oiled loaf tin lined with greaseproof paper. Bake for 40-45 minutes until a thin skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Meanwhile, place the remaining sugar (200g) in a pan with 200ml water and the rosemary branches. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Leave to cool completely and then strain through a sieve.

When the cake is cooked, place on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes, then invert and peel off the greasproof paper. Prick all over with a thin skewer or toothpick and drizzle over half of the rosemary syrup so that it completely soaks into the cake. Leave to cool completely. Keep the remaining syrup in the fridge until ready to use.

To serve, cut into slices and drizzle with some more of the syrup, add dollops of greek yoghurt.

In the cake tin after I had slathered
the syrup all over it. It soaks in quickly.
Yes I used a round cake tin, but same cooking time.

I'll never make a food photographer because the thought of faffing about with tripods and
lighting with this in front of me waiting to be eaten is too awful to contemplate :-)

Rosemary. It's been flowering for ages
but it would be nice to see it covered in bees!

So this is what we are eating this Easter in lieu of chocolate. I think it is fractionally more healthy and at least contains two ingredients from the garden, rosemary and eggs!


  1. I once made polenta cake - slightly different recipe for my niece who is allergic to wheat and eggs. We all enjoyed it, must find that recipe again!

    1. Hi Diana, thanks for visiting! I enjoy trying new recipes and am glad this cake came out fine the 2nd time I made it. I only have a handful of 'foolproof' (me being the fool) cake recipes that I can rely upon in case of feeding visitors, so they must be rigorously tested first. No-one here is complaining about that ;-)

  2. Because my son came with his family I made a lemon pie for Easter, it was the first time and it was very good and easy to do...
    Your cake is appetizing, that means that your picture is not as bad as you said...

    1. Yummy Cergie, was that a tarte au citron?
      Thank you! I didn't use flash taking those photos because it is sometimes too harsh for food, consequently I had a very slow shutter speed and it was handheld. I am not going to get out a tripod just to take a photo of a cake as this is not a food blog :-))))