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Single slice of lemon cake with blueberry sauce on white plate, silver fork, white background.

Lemon Polenta Ricotta Cake

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5 from 6 reviews

Super easy lemon polenta cake with some ricotta cheese for moisture and served with a gorgeous blueberry sauce. The texture is dense, sweet and a welcomed change from the usual sponge cakes.

  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

Units

For lemon polenta cake:

  • 3/4 cup polenta or yellow cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup water or buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup (150g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup or 115g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled but not cold
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold and in small pieces for top of the cake
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature

For the blueberry sauce:

  • 1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar

Instructions

For lemon polenta cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF/180°C.
  2. Line the bottom of a round 9-inch (24cm) springform pan (or springform cake tin) with parchment paper and spray or butter the sides of the pan.
  3. Mix polenta, flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.
  4. Beat ricotta and water until smooth in a large bowl with an electric mixer. If it's still somewhat curdled, don't worry.
  5. Add sugar, honey, and lemon zest and beat well.
  6. Gradually add melted butter and then add eggs, one at a time, and beat until the mixture is smooth.
  7. Add the dry ingredients in two or three additions, beating on low speed only until incorporated.
  8. Pour the batter into the pan, dot the top with the tablespoon of chilled butter, and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the top is golden and a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  9. Let cool completely on a wire rack and remove from the tin or pan onto a serving plate, and serve with the blueberry sauce. You can also sprinkle the top with powdered sugar (known as icing sugar in some countries) before serving if you like a sweeter cake.

For the blueberry sauce:

  1. Mix blueberries, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan.
  2. Cook for 3-5 minutes at medium heat, until syrupy and the berries are somewhat wrinkled.
  3. Store, covered, in the refrigerator. 

Notes

Organization: always read the recipe first and make sure you have all the ingredients, at the right temperatures, and also the rest of the equipment and space to make it. This will make the process so much easier!

Baking time: keep in mind that all ovens and pans are different, even if they look the same or very similar. The baking time in my recipes is as accurate as it can be, but it might take you more or less time. You can use a thermometer that is placed inside the oven (like the OXO oven thermometer) to check that your oven is at the right temperature. I recommend you keep track of how your oven works and what tiny details you might need to adjust. 

Ricotta: it needs to be soft, curdled, and moist but without excess liquid. If it has too much water, drain it by placing it on a colander with a cheesecloth. 

Polenta: use the instant type as it will absorb liquid better. 

Variations: use lime or orange zest or even a mix of several citruses. Add a ground spice such as cardamom for a different touch. 

  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Category: Cakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: International

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/8
  • Calories: 448
  • Sugar: 45.8 g
  • Sodium: 125.7 mg
  • Fat: 18.8 g
  • Carbohydrates: 66.4 g
  • Protein: 7.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 96.7 mg