Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Orange Polenta Cake

"Try not thinking of peeling an orange. Try not imagining the juice running down your fingers, the soft inner part of the peel. The smell. Try and you can't. The brain doesn't process negatives."

It has been a super busy week. Limited time for baking and posting. I woke up with polenta cake on the brain. Did a quick Google search and found this little delight. My pictures came out terrible. The caramel did not spread well, and I almost burnt this thing. BUT ENJOY! ..with that introduction I am sure you will bake it immediately! 

Serves 6 to 8
  • Active Time:35 min
  • Start to Finish:2 1/2 HR (includes cooling) 
For Caramel Orange Layer- Next time I will double the caramel
  • 1/2 cup superfine granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into bits
  • 2 navel oranges (I used one- all I had)

For Cake

  • 1 3/4 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup superfine granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons orange-flower water
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups ground almonds (7 oz)
  • 2/3 cup quick-cooking polenta

For Glaze

  • 1/4 cup orange marmalade
  • 1 tablespoon water

Make Caramel Orange Layer:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Lightly butter a 9-inch  cake pan, then line bottom with  parchment paper and side with a strip of parchment. ( I think i may use 2 layers - to decrease burning
  • Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved, then wash down any sugar crystals from side of pan with a pastry brush dipped in cold water. Boil, without stirring, swirling pan occasionally so caramel colors evenly, until dark amber.
  • Remove from heat and add butter, swirling pan until incorporated, then carefully but quickly pour caramel into cake pan, tilting it to coat evenly.
  • Grate zest from oranges and reserve for cake. Cut remaining peel, including white pith, from both oranges with a paring knife. Cut oranges crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Remove any seeds and arrange slices in 1 layer over caramel.

Make Cake:

  • Beat butter with sugar using an electric mixer until just combined. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in orange-flower water and reserved zest.
  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. With mixer at low speed, mix almonds, polenta, and flour mixture into egg mixture until just combined.
  • Spread batter evenly over oranges (preferably with an offset spatula). Bake until a wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean, 1 to 1 1/4 hours.
    MINE ONLY COOKED FOR 30 minutes! Cool in pan 5 minutes. Invert cake onto a cake plate and discard parchment.

Glaze Cake:

  • Heat marmalade with water in a small saucepan until melted. Strain through a sieve into a small bowl. Brush top of cake with some of glaze. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Cooks’ note: Cake, without glaze, can be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well, at room temperature. Glaze before serving.

1 comment:

  1. Looks delicious! I'm actually writing up an orange cookie post right now!