Blood orange olive oil polenta cake

Serves: 12
Course: Dessert
Cooking Time: 3 hrs 0 mins
  • 2 blood oranges
  • Zest and juice of 2 regular oranges
  • 3 eggs
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 210ml olive oil
  • 200g ground almonds
  • 120g polenta
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • For the drizzle:
  • 50ml honey
  • 50ml blood orange juice

1 Put the two blood oranges in a saucepan and cover them with water. Place the saucepan over a high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and keep the water at a simmer, cover slightly with a lid and continue to cook for about two hours until the oranges are completely soft. Keep an eye on the water and top up as necessary with hot water.

2 Turn off the heat and leave the oranges to cool completely. This step can be done two or three days in advance if preferred, storing the oranges in a sealed container in the fridge.

3 When ready to bake the cake, preheat the oven to 180 degrees, or 160 if using a fan oven. Grease and line a 23cm springform tin with parchment paper.

4 Cut the oranges in half and remove the pips. Blend the oranges to a smooth puree in a processor, add the fresh orange zest and juice and set aside.

5 In a large bowl whisk the eggs and sugar together until pale, for about five minutes. Add the olive oil and the cooled blood orange puree.

6 In a separate bowl mix the ground almonds, polenta and baking powder together. Gently fold this into the wet mix until just combined.

7 Spoon the mix into the prepared tin and bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, until puffed up slightly and golden. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the tin and place on a serving plate.

8 Whisk the drizzle ingredients together and pour half over the warm cake. Reserve the rest to spoon over the cake when ready to serve.

Aoife Noonan

Aoife Noonan

Aoife Noonan is a pastry chef and culinary consultant. She writes a weekly baking column for the Irish Times Magazine