Orange & Pistachio Polenta Cake (Vegan+Gluten Free)

Last year I tried polenta cake for the first time and knew I had to try and re-create it for myself. I succeeded and made this loaf cake, but I wanted to try my hand at making a vegan version. To make this vegan, the eggs in this recipe have been replaced by ground flaxseed and aquafaba which acts as a binder to make this cake hold together. Be warned though, polenta cake is very crumbly in nature so is much better served as a dessert with a dollop of (vegan) creme fresh or cream, rather than as a slice and go kinda cake.

This recipe has been adapted from this recipe from Sorted Food, replacing the grapefruit for oranges.  I personally find orange and pistachio is such a winning flavour combination, but now the summer is upon us, lemon would also work, with perhaps some blueberries thrown into the mixture too. 

Ingredients for the cake: 

  • 200g dairy-free butter (such as flora freedom)
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp ground flaxseed mixed with 150ml aquafaba (or 3 eggs)
  • 100g polenta
  • 200g pistachios, ground in a food processor until a fine meal (or use ground almonds)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Zest of 1 orange

Ingredients for the orange syrup:

  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 100g caster
  • 100ml water

Method: 

  1. Preheat oven to 160oc and grease and line a loose bottom cake tin
  2. Mix the ground flaxseed and aquafaba together in a small jug and set aside until it turns thick and gloopy
  3. Rub the zest of one orange into the caster sugar – this is the best way to achieve optimum orange flavour
  4. Cream the butter and sugars together until soft and fluffy
  5. Next, add the thick flaxseed mixture (or eggs) and mix again
  6. Fold in the polenta, ground pistachios and baking powder and mix until thoroughly combined. The mixture may look split, but this is fine
  7. Spoon into the tin and level off. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the cake is firm and a skewer inserted in the middle comes clean
  8. While the cake is cooking, make the syrup. Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the mixture reduces.
  9. Once the cake is out of the oven, brush the syrup liberally over the cake. Leave to cool completely before slicing and serving.

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  • Laura Torninoja

    Yum this looks so good! I bet it would be perfect with a scoop of vanilla ice cream too – kind of like a healthier (but equally good) version of a crumble haha! xx

    Laura // Middle of Adventure

  • I tried polenta cake for the first time this year and absolutely loved it! Definitely going to be giving this recipe a try, it looks delicious and perfect for this time of year! S x

  • I really like polenta cake and I love the sound of the orange and pistachio combo. Definitely going to give this a go!
    Vicky x
    http://www.dalton-banks.co.uk