Summary: This is a really yummy, not too sweet, unique cake from the June 2012 issue of Food & Wine. I’ve made several small tweaks, which I note below.
- 1 stick unsalted butter, melted and then cooled, plus more for greasing the pan
- 1 cup unsalted, raw almonds
- 1⅓ c all-purpose flour
- ½ c instant polenta
- 1 T baking powder
- 1 tsp minced rosemary (I used fresh; you couldn’t really taste it, so add more if you want to)
- finely grated zest of 1 lemon
- ½ tsp salt
- 4 large eggs, at room temp
- 1 c + ½ tsp granulated sugar, divided
- 1 c crème fraîche, divided
- ½ c water
- 2 T fresh lemon juice, divided
- ½ c powdered sugar
- Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350, and grease an 11″ springform pan. If you, like I, only have a 9″ springform pan, grease it and another very small Pyrex dish or mini-pan.
- Spread the almonds on a rimmed baking sheet, and cook until slightly fragrant, 4-5 minutes. Let cool completely, and then blitz in a food processor with ½ tsp sugar until they are finely ground but not pasty. The sugar will help avoid the pasty-factor!
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together then almond meal, flour, polenta, baking powder, rosemary, lemon zest and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the eggs and ½ c sugar and beat at medium-high speed until it’s tripled in volume, 7-10 minutes.
- Turn the speed down to low, and with the motor running, add ¾ c crème fraîche, and then drizzle in the melted and cooled butter until just combined.
- Using a rubber spatula, gently fold this egg mixture into the dry mixture in 3 batches. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan(s) and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 24-25 minutes.
- While the cake is cooking, make the syrup: In a small saucepan, combine the water, remaining ½ c sugar and 1 T lemon juice. Boil for 5 minutes, then remove from heat and let cool.
- When ready, remove the cake from the oven and set it (in its pan) on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the syrup evenly over it and then let it sit until cool. Remove the side and bottom of the pan and transfer the cake to a platter.
- Make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk together then powdered sugar, remaining ¼ c of crème fraîche and remaining tablespoon of lemon juice until smooth. Spread the glaze all over the cake and then let it sit a few minutes, until the glaze sets a bit.
- I topped mine with fresh strawberries.
Cooking time: 25 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 8