Created for the Booth’s Christmas book, our BOSS food stylist Angela Boggiano put together this recipe as a citrusy alternative to a traditional cake. See her full profile on our website now.
Angela said: ‘The Polenta Cake is a favourite recipe as it’s a cross between a cake and a dessert with its sumptuously orange soaked sponge. Perfect served warm with cream for an alternative Christmas dessert. It will store in an airtight container for up to 5 days and is also gluten free. What’s not to love? It has all the flavours of the season with an optional splash of booze!
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 1 hour
4 large oranges
6 large free range eggs
150g ground almonds
350g golden caster sugar
3 tbsp Grand Marnier, Cointreau or Brandy (optional)
1. Put two of the oranges in a saucepan and cover with water, bring to the boil and then simmer covered for 1 hour until very soft. The cooking time depends on the size of the oranges, if they still feel a little firm leave to cook for longer. Remove from the water and leave to cool, then halve and remove the pips.
2. Preheat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Grease and line a 23cm spring form cake tin with greaseproof paper. Place the orange halves with the skin in a food processor and whiz until you have a puree. Add the eggs, polenta, almonds and 250g of the sugar and pulse until you have a thick batter consistency. Pour this into the prepared tin and bake for 1 hour until the cake is golden and risen and a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the middle. Leave to cool slightly in the tin.
3. Place the remaining caster sugar in a saucepan with 100ml water and heat to dissolve. Bring to the boil and bubble for 10 minutes then add the liqueur, juice and grated zest from one of the oranges.
4. Slice the remaining orange thinly and add the slices to the syrup and simmer for a further 5 minutes.
5. Turn out the cake onto a serving plate. Insert tiny skewer holes all over the cake and gently spoon the syrup all over leaving to soak in as you go. Do this until most of the syrup has soaked into the cake. Arrange the sticky orange slices over the top of the cake to decorate. Serve the cake cut into wedges with extra syrup drizzled over the top. Delicious with thick cream, Crème fraîche or clotted cream or serve warm with vanilla ice cream.