ppp cake4

In the beginning of last autumn I made a Blue Grape and Polenta cake which made me realize the potential of polenta cakes but then I forgot all about it for some reason. Until the other day when I saw a polenta cake over at La Mia Cucina, Lis is one of the two founders of the Daring Bakers (Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice is the other) and sometimes I think she is the most daring of us all. Anyway, she had made a delicious Pineapple Upside Down Corn Cake that really made me want to bake something. I don’t particularly like pineapple cakes so I made a corn meal or polenta cake with pears and while I was at it I just had to try how it worked with my favourite spice cardamom in it. It worked. (Very well because I have to restrain myself from eating it all but then I like polenta cakes, maybe I better give it to some neighbour.) And it’s gluten-free as well.

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400 ml /1.7 cup milk
135 g/ 4 3/4 oz salted butter
250 g/8 3/4 oz corn meal on the coarse side
230 g /8 oz sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp crushed cardamom kernels (or is it seeds?) or ground caradmom if you only have that
1 large and soft pear
3-5 tbsp pine nuts

– Mix corn meal, sugar and cardamom in a bowl.
– Melt the butter and then add the milk, bring it to the boil and then pour it over the corn meal. Let it stand for a couple of minutes so that it absorbs all the milk.
– Add the eggs and stir well, it should be quite liquid which is all well, the corn meal needs more liquid than normal flour.
– Peel and slice the pear thinly.
– Pour the batter into a cake tin, mine was 22 cm/8.6 in, and put the pear slices and then the pine nuts on top of the cake.
– Bake in a pre-heated oven (175°C/347°F) until ready which is a lousy direction in a recipe but I don’t really know how long it took. It took longer than I thought it would, I did a lot of other things while it was in the oven, like putting my youngest to bed, and I checked it several times but I think it took about 40-45 minutes.

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