Cakes never get old, but it’s worth changing up the regular old wheat flour every now and then. Moist and deliciously bold, this Gluten Free Orange, Almond and Polenta Cake is DELISH! It has a gorgeous texture and it soaks up the orange syrup like a sponge!
The PERFECT holiday cake.
Why wait? Let’s jump right into this yumminess! Y’all are in for a treat with this post!
Let’s take a look at what’s in this yumminess:
- Almond Flour or Gluten Free Flour
- Caster Sugar
- Juice From Orange
- Vanilla Extract
- Baking Powder
- Cardamom Pods
You’re probably asking yourself, “What is Caster Sugar?” and “Is Caster Sugar different than granulated sugar?” Well, yes…there is a difference. It’s a baker’s DREAM sugar! Check out this article here from Bob’s Red Mill. They do a fabulous job of breaking down what Caster Sugar is and how it makes a difference when it comes to baking.
How To Make This Orange, Almond and Polenta Cake
Let’s start with a video so you can see how this cake is made.
Step 1 – Grease The Bundt Tin
Use your EXTRA butter to grease a bundt tin, then use the extra almond meal or your gluten-free flour to dust the cake tin, making sure you shake off the excess. Before we go any further…let’s talk about how to avoid the cake from sticking to the bundt tin.
Expert Tip – Stopping It From Sticking
If you watch the video above, you may have noticed that the cake looks slightly broken. And that’s because it is slightly broken. It turns out that my cake stuck a little bit to the bundt tin. Believe it or not, it was actually a good thing this happened, because I would rather it happen to me so that I can then solve the problem so it doesn’t end up happening to you.
So…I thought spraying the inside of the cake tin with cooking spray would be enough, but it turns out that isn’t the case. You need 2 things: plenty of butter and flour for dusting (of course when I say flour, I mean gluten-free flour). Don’t be shy with the butter BUT, make sure you dust off the excess flour otherwise you’ll get large chunks of flour caked on your cake.
Oh… and dusting the bundt tin with any extra almond meal is another great option.
And even when you effectively grease and flour your bundt tin, it’s still worth being careful when trying to remove the cake from the tin. Make sure it completely cools and make sure none of the edges are catching. Just loosen it up using a spatula before gently turning it out.
The next thing you’re going to do is beat several key ingredients together. Do you want some tips on how to be a good baker? I’ve got you covered below.
Expert Tips – Beating The Batter
Creaming the butter and sugar is not just a matter of beating the 2 ingredients together until they’re mixed. It’s about the mixture going softer, paler and expanding. Give each beating step more time!
I like to start the process off by beating the butter by itself first, making it lighter and softer when you add the sugar. I also like to take my time when beating the sugar through. Once again, the trick here is to beat it until the colour lightens up, and the mixture has increased in volume.
I also like to beat the eggs together before adding them to the cake batter. This allows you to add the egg in a slower and more controlled fashion. And the reason this is important is that sometimes just cracking in one whole egg and beating it through is too much for the creamed butter and sugar to hold in one go so it can end up splitting.
Here’s what I’m getting at…don’t just beat the mixture to combine the ingredients, but focus on changing the state of those ingredients. I promise that you can take your cake making skills up a notch!
This is a valuable lesson I learned when making this Mint Chocolate Mousse with Booze Soaked Cherries, which is another FANTASTIC gluten-free dessert that you must make!
How Does Polenta Affect The Cake?
When you add polenta to a cake, you will notice a course, grainy texture as you eat it. Now I know this sounds a little strange and you may think “why would you want that?” However, when I say grainy, I don’t mean it in an unappetizing way, like eating dirt for example.
The graininess actually makes the cake super satisfying to eat. Almost like cooking al dente pasta. When the pasta is the slightest bit undercooked to give that satisfying chew to it. Hopefully, that gives you an idea of what I mean by “grainy”. It’s not just a matter of flavour with this cake recipe, it’s also the texture that makes it great.
Making Cardamom and Orange Syrup
It’s time to bake the cake! Details on that in the recipe card below. But I want to take a minute to talk about this Cardamom and Orange Syrup. While your Orange, Almond and Polenta Cake is baking, you’re going to put your orange juice, sugar and cardamom pods in a pot or pan, then place over high heat on the stove. Bring it to a boil and then let it simmer on low for 10-15 minutes to allow the cardamom to steep in the syrup.
Substitute Tip – If you don’t have cardamom pods, you can use 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom instead.
Once you cake is done baking and is out of the bundt tin, you’re going to prick holes in the cake using a skewer or a fork. Next, pour the syrup over the cake, then give the cake a minute or 2 to soak it all up.
Garnishing Your Cake
Here’s what I like to garnish my cake with:
- Pistachio chips
- Orange Slices
What Else Am I Cooking?
- Mouthwatering Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Mint Chocolate Mousse With Booze Soaked Cherries
- Cinnamon Infused Creme Brulee
Thank you so much for reading and thanks again Amanda for letting me post on your amazing food blog. Since this recipe would be great for the upcoming Christmas, you may also want to have a look at this post which shows you how to make super Crispy Roasted Potatoes
Did you find this blog post and these step-by-step instructions helpful? If you’ve tried my this or any of my other recipes, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how it turned out in the comments below!
Oh – and watch the video!! Step-by-step instructions!! You can also sign up for my newsletter on my website here and FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious food I’m creating!
One of the most satisfying cakes to both make and eat. The perfect treat after any festive dinner.
- Extra butter for greasing
- Extra almond flour or gluten-free flour for dusting
- 1 cup butter softened, plus extra for greasing (225 g)
- 1 cup caster sugar (225) g
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 3/4 cups almond flour
- 1/2 cup polenta
- 1 teaspoon baking powder (make sure your baking powder is gluten-free)
- Pistachios for garnish
- Pre-heat your oven to 160 degrees C (325 degrees F)
Use your EXTRA butter to grease a cake tin, then use the extra almond meal or your gluten-free flour to dust the cake tin, making sure you shake off the excess.
Beat the eggs and the egg yolk together in a bowl, then set aside.
Put your butter in a bowl large bowl, then beat it (I recommend using an electric beater) for 1 minute.
Add your caster sugar and beat for a few more minutes until pale and increased in volume.
Continue to beat the mixture as you slowly add your beaten eggs.
- Once the eggs are well incorporated, add the orange juice, orange zest and vanilla extract then beat through.
Add the ground almonds, your polenta, salt, and baking powder then fold through the mixture.
- Transfer the batter to your greased and dusted cake tin,
- Place in your pre-heated oven and bake for 50-60 minutes (take it out after 50 minutes and then use a skewer to test whether it's cooked or not).
Put your orange juice, sugar and cardamom pods in a pot or pan, then place over high heat on the stove.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat down and continue to simmer the syrup for 2-3 minutes until the sugar has dissolved.
Turn the heat off, and leave the syrup for 10-15 minutes to allow the cardamom to steep in the syrup.
- Turn the cake out onto your desired plate, cake stand, tray or whatever surface you wish.
Prick some holes in the cake using a skewer or a fork.
Next, pour the syrup over the cake, then give the cake a minute or 2 to soak it all up.
Garnish the cake with pistachios, fresh fruit or whatever else you like then serve.
- Substitute Tip - If you don't have cardamom pods, you can use 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom instead.
- Grease and flour the bundt cake tin well to stop it from sticking.
- Take a bit of extra time to cream the butter and sugar.
- To help make the batter go light and fluffy.
- Beat the eggs together before adding to the cake so that you can add it slowly. Adding too much egg one go can cause the cake mix to split.
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