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Polenta Pound Cake

July 18, 2011

Ask and ye shall receive. My uncle Barry asked where I discovered the polenta pound cake recipe that I whipped up for my birthday, so I thought I would share it now. Pretty much all of the inspiration for my birthday meal came from Cathy and Tony Mantuano’s delightful cookbook Wine Bar Food.  My aunt Jules gave the book to me for Christmas several years ago and when it came time to plan my birthday extravaganza, I knew that this book would lead me in the right path. The food is mostly simple, elegant and filled with fresh ingredients.

The pound cake in the book calls for almond extract and amaretto liquor for topping. I am not the biggest fan of amaretto flavor so I substituted orange flavoring. If you prefer almond…go for it. This recipe says it serves 8. We ate just a little cake with ice cream and whipped cream which stretched the recipe out quite a bit.

Polenta Pound Cake
adapted from Amaretto Polenta Pound Cake in Wine Bar Food.

  • 12 Tbs(1 1/2 sticks) softened unsalted butter
  • 1/2 c yellow polenta
  • 1 c sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp Cointreau, plus extra for garnish
  • zest of one orange
  • 3/4 c all purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • fresh whipped cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut a piece of parchment paper  the width of the bottom of a 9 inch loaf pan and the length of the bottom and sides. Lay paper inside pan and set aside. (IThe book recommends greasing the pan and coating with polenta, but I found the polenta to be to crunchy).
Place the sugar and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat with the paddle attachment on medium until creamy and well blended (about 4 minutes). Add the eggs and egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Finish blending with 1/2 tsp Cointreau and orange zest.
In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, polenta and salt together. Fold into egg mixture. Mix just enough to combine.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes. Do not open the door. (Your cake will fall as mine did). Test for doneness with a toothpick. When it comes out dry, remove cake from oven and cook on a rack for at least 10 minutes before unmolding.
Serve at room temperature with Cointreau drizzled on top and a giant dollop of fresh whipped cream. The cake can be kept well wrapped for 2-3 days on the counter or frozen for future eating.
3 Comments leave one →
  1. July 18, 2011 5:16 pm

    Thanks for the request, Barry. I was going to but you beat me to the punch. Actually I probably would have/already did forget.


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