Citrus Polenta Cake

Citrus Polenta Cake

Yield: Makes 12 servings


  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 3 oranges
  • ¾ cup cornmeal or polenta
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 lemon


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and place a rack in the center of the oven. Prepare the springform pan with cooking spray. Dust the pan with flour.
  2. Grate the zest from all the oranges. Set the zest aside for the cake batter, and set the fruit aside to use in the glaze.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until they’re pale yellow and have tripled in volume, about 3-4 minutes. Beat in the reserved orange zest.
  5. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the olive oil into the egg mixture. Begin with 1/3 of the dry ingredients then add half the olive oil. Continue, ending with the dry ingredients. Beat each addition only until it’s incorporated, scraping down sides of the bowl as needed.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with the spatula. Bake for 25-35 minutes, rotating the pan 180º halfway through baking time. The cake is done when it springs back when touched in the center and the cake is pulling away from the sides of the pan. (When the cake begins to turn golden on top cover lightly with foil.) Cool for 15 minutes then carefully remove the sides of the pan.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare the glaze. Sift 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar into a large bowl. Squeeze at least 2 Tbsp of juice from the oranges, and at least 1 Tbsp. juice from the lemon into a small bowl. (Make sure no seeds remain.) Add juices to the large bowl and mix into the sugar with a whisk until completely smooth. If needed, adjust glaze with more juice or more sugar to achieve a “drizzle” consistency.
  8. Drizzle over cooled cake and allow glaze to dry.


Equipment Needed:

Measuring cups and spoons, Springform pan – 9 in., Nonstick cooking spray, Fine gauge grater, Various bowls, Mixing bowl and electric mixer, w/whisk attachment, Hand-held whisk, Rubber spatula, Citrus reamer

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