Lemon Polenta Cake with Honey Ricotta and Blueberries

LP ricotta top

I have recently decided to jump on the gluten-free bandwagon. Going ‘gf’ seems to be all the rage at the moment. I feel sorry for people who genuinely are coeliac, as there seems to be a surge in people suddenly and miraculously developing a gluten ‘intolerance’ overnight. Consequently, I’ve found that telling people you don’t eat gluten is often met with an eye roll and an accusatory ‘yes but you’re not actually allergic, are you’.


Anyway, I thought I’d give it a go, as I’ve heard so many positive accounts of what avoiding gluten can do. The first hurdle was baking. I made some relatively successful gluten free (and dairy free, just to give myself a challenge) cookies, using rice flour and coconut oil. So next I thought I’d try a cake. Lemon polenta cake is one of the easiest things to make gluten free, as the polenta acts as a good substitute for the flour, and gives the cake a pleasant grainy texture. I topped the cake with some ricotta whisked with honey, and scattered over some blueberries.

LP and ricotta


For the cake:

250g butter

4 large eggs

140g ground almonds

140g polenta

200g caster sugar

Zest of 4 lemons

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp baking powder


For the syrup and topping:

200ml lemon juice (approx. 4 lemons)

100g caster sugar

Handful of flaked almonds

250g ricotta

1 tbsp honey

1 punnet of blueberries


Tin 30 x 20cm, greased and lined with baking paper


Preheat oven to 180C. To make the cake, cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl, then stir in the eggs and ground almonds, then the polenta. Stir in the baking powder and vanilla and lemon zest. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, scatter with the flaked almonds and bake for 30-40 minutes, until a knife inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Just before the cake comes out of the oven, heat the lemon juice and sugar over a medium heat, simmering the mixture until syrupy. Take the mixture out of the oven, and pour the syrup straight over the warm cake. To make the ricotta topping, whisk the ricotta until smooth, the stir in the honey. Top each serving of the cake with a spoonful of the ricotta mixture and a few blueberries.

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