Some days, everything is the worst. Sorry to be a bummer, but it’s true.
Today just happens to be one of those days for me.
Despite being June, it’s cold out. I’ve been busy and exhausted all week so my house is a total mess. Work has been oddly frustrating for no particular reason other than the fact that everyone seems to be having rough go of it this week.
To top it all off, my darling dog, who I love more than I could have ever imagined, has decided- contrary to what she felt last week when she was such a good little girl– that she doesn’t like being left alone while we’re at work. Nope- in fact, she hates it. She poop-on-the-floor-couch-ripping-apart hates it. So, now not only do I have a poopy floor and a mangled couch to come home to, but I also kind of feel like a failure as a dog-parent. I want Little Miss Hannah to be happy and healthy and comfortable… time to call in the dog walker/sitter.
(Also, I’m weary of dog walkers now due to some recent tragedies in our area and a series of scathing Yelp reviews. Why can’t I just pay someone kind and loving to take my sweet girl for a walk and trust that they will take good care of her???)
Um, okay. So I got vastly off topic here and haven’t even mentioned this recipe- I promise there is a point to all this ranting (aside from the obvious benefits of venting into the void- no one reads these write ups, right? 😉 ).
I have half of this cake sitting on my kitchen island. That is what’s getting me through this day.
Tonight, I am going to walk through that front door, take off my pants (what? Do any of you not do that the minute you get home?), let the dog out (oh, okay- I’ll take off my pants after the dog yard bit) and then dig in to a slice of this beautiful cake. Before dinner- that’s what kind of day this is and that’s how good this cake is.
Just a sliver. Just to take the edge off the day. (Funny, usually people say that about a stiff drink and usually I would, too, but like- this cake… this great little cake.)
Somehow this cake manages to feel both rich and amazingly bright, making it a great summertime dessert. The ground almonds and cornmeal create a wonderful gritty texture that you really have to experience to appreciate- the ‘mouth-feel’ on this dish is truly out of this world.
Loosely based on Nigella Lawson’s Lemon Polenta Cake, she says “try to imagine what lemon curd would taste like in cake form, this [is] it.” No kidding, Nigella. No kidding.
I took her original recipe in a slightly different direction and added rosemary to it. Rosemary lemonade is my favourite non-boozy summer sip- the combination is so refreshing! The light herbal flavour really elevates this cake to another level.
If you omit the baking powder, or get gluten-free baking powder, this cake is also completely gluten-free, meaning this is a recipe I will definitely keep on rotation for all those big group dinner parties and potlucks this summer…
|Rosemary Lemon Cornmeal Cake|| |
- 200 g butter
- 200 g sugar
- 200 g ground almonds
- 100 g cornmeal
- 1.5 tsp baking powder*
- 3 eggs
- 2 lemons, juice and zest
- 2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 125 g icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Line a springform pan with lightly greased parchment paper.
- Beat together the butter and sugar until pale and whipped.
- In a medium bowl, mix ground almonds, cornmeal and baking powder (if using). Add a portion of the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, mix well, then add one egg. Repeat- adding a bit of dry ingredients, then an egg until all is well incorporated. I like to use a standing mixer for this since, to omit things like baking powder (which contain gluten, unless you get special gluten-free stuff), we need to really beat air into the eggs to lift the cake. You know how if you over-work gnocchi it's the worst? This is the opposite of that.
- Beat in lemon zest and pour the batter into your lined springform pan. Bake for 40 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool in the springform pan.
- In a small saucepan, mix icing sugar and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Once the icing sugar is completely dissolved, remove from heat and add most of your rosemary (save a small sprig for later if you want to use it as garnish). Let the rosemary steep in the syrup for 5-7 minutes then remove the herbs.
- Using a small toothpick or cake tester, swiftly poke small holes throughout the top of your cake. Pour your syrup over top the cake and let it sit until completely cooled before removing it from the pan.