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GF Orange, Polenta & Almond Cake

As a business that supplies food and drink to the public, it’s incredibly important to offer gluten-free options on your menu, as well as a full allergen card of the menu. People with coeliac disease, and the friends and family they eat with, are worth an estimated £100 million to the hospitality industry. So whether you make an entire gluten-free menu or simply make some tweaks to original dishes, it really is worth investing the time in.
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INGREDIENTS

Serves 10

  • 175g of butter, softened and cubed, plus extra for greasing
  • 175g of caster sugar
  • 3 medium free-range eggs
  • 200g ground almonds
  • 100g fine polenta
  • 50g greek-style yoghurt
  • 1 heaped tsp of gluten free baking powder
  • 4 green cardamom pods, seeds only, lightly crushed
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 lemon, finely grated zest only
  • 1 medium orange, finely grated zest and juice only (around 40ml) + 1 orange for decoration – if you can get your hands on a blood orange, use this 
  • 20g flaked almonds

METHOD

  • Preheat the oven to 180C.
  • Butter and line a 900g loaf tin with baking paper (or the baking tray).
  • Put the butter and sugar in a mixer and whisk until very pale and creamy (alternatively use an electric whisk). 
  • Add two of the eggs, one at a time, whisking well between each addition. 
  • Add the final egg and half the almonds and whisk until well combined, light and fluffy.
  • Add the remaining ingredients, except the flaked almonds, and whisk until well combined. 
  • Don’t worry if the cake looks a little curdled, but add a couple of tablespoons of gluten free self-raising flour if the mixture is looking very curdled – this can happen if the ingredients are added too quickly.
  • Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, sprinkle with flaked almonds and bake for 45–55 minutes, or until risen and golden brown. 
  • Test that the cake is ready by inserting a skewer into the middle – if it comes out clean it is done.
  • Leave to cool for 10 minutes, then loosen gently with a knife before removing from the tin, taking care as it will be hot. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, or serve warm with a drizzle of honey and a fresh wedge of orange (you could caramelise these in a pan!).

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