The Recipe Project #2: Lemon Polenta Cake

The Recipe Project #2: Lemon Polenta Cake

Although a little later than I’d anticipated I’ve finally gotten around to posting the next instalment of ‘The Recipe Project’. This one was well worth the wait though, it’s an excellent cake, tasty and extremely easy to make with a uniqueness to it that makes it a little different from your everyday sponge-based cake.

This recipe is one I’ve had on my Pinterest board for a few weeks and had been eagerly waiting to try, read on and enjoy the second instalment of ‘The Recipe Project’. 

Recipe Name:

The Image(s):


Recipe Source:
Family Style Food.

Why we chose this recipe:
Some time ago Mel and I had been out for a morning coffee and cake and had found a Polenta cake in the ever-alluring cake display. Intrigued by the use of polenta rather than a standard wheat flour we thought we would give it a go, and we were extremely happy with the unique corn-based taste. Since then we have wanted to have a go at creating our own polenta-based cake and after looking at a few recipes online we settled on this one, with a few modifications for aesthetic reasons and to have the cake resemble that excellent one we had at the café a little more.

The outcome:
After an initial scare, wondering if we had actually used some fine semolina instead of the polenta from the cupboard we managed to have a great success with this cake. The recipe did end up making quite allot of mixture, from the outset Mel and I wanted to make a square cake rather than the round cake in the recipe. I’m not sure if the change in cake tin size gave us the excess mixture or if we just didn’t fill our square tin as high as we could have. In the end we used the extra mixture to make some delicious muffins, giving us the opportunity to use some blueberries we had in the freezer to add some colour and to get some different photos. The muffins were extremely photogenic and gave me some different images I’m extremely happy with!

What a great cake this recipe makes and so tasty. It was far better than the café cake we had and it exceeded both of our expectations. The recipe makes a really nice light cake – we were both a little scared of this becoming a bit dense or too dry but in the end those fears were unfounded. The recipe actually uses a dusting of icing sugar as topping but we wanted to take it one step further by adding some lemon-flavoured icing which worked really well for both making the cake look much tastier but also adding another dimension to the taste. We also made a lemon syrup/curd/sauce type thing to serve with it, mainly due to the fact that the café cake we had was on a little dry side and we wanted a sauce to add a little moisture. Again this decision was a fantastic one adding another texture to the delicious cake – even though it was still tasty sans-sauce. With the addition of icing sugar and syrup/sauce this is certainly no sour lemon cake but deliciously sweet and decadent, great for sharing as an afternoon tea with friends.

Would we make this recipe again?

I am definitely keeping this recipe on hand as a ‘wow’ cake for when we are entertaining. It’s different from a normal wheat-based cake with a unique taste coming from the polenta. We’ve since added polenta to a staple of ingredients we keep in our pantry just incase it is needed and I’m sure we will be making this again. I’d also like to give this a go as an orange cake, replacing the lemon with oranges or even grape fruit. The icing was a genius idea by Mel and I think we’ll ice any other cakes we make in a similar fashion to this. Maybe next time we will try a savoury dish!


The Recipe Project is a (mostly) bi-monthy project that my beautiful fiancé Mel and myself undertake with a goal of actually making some of the great recipes we bookmark, collect, hoard and have in recipe books and magazines. The project is a great way to expand our knowledge of food, techniques and to discover some great dishes. It gives me a great challenge each time to photograph the food in the best possible way, trying to capture the food in a way that makes it look as tasty as it tastes – and with Mel on hand to help with the cooking it always tastes great!

Stay up to date with the latest news and information from Photos by Jonathan by following me on Facebook.



  1. Karen
    March 16, 2014 at 16:18 — Reply

    Wow, your cake turned out beautifully! So glad to see your post, and thanks for the shout-out. Cheers!

  2. Jono
    March 24, 2014 at 01:22 — Reply

    No worries Karen, it’s a great recipe I’ll be passing on to people! Thanks for your original post.

Leave a Reply