Food Matters Project #28: Lemon Cornmeal Cake

A little late here with my Food Matters Project post, but better than never, right?  And this is a good one to keep in your back pocket, a quick dessert- perfect to make before friends stop by for a mid-week dinner.

This weeks host is Jen, of Prairiesummers.  She chose Mark Bittman’s Apricot Polenta Cake.  Check out her version, and what everyone else made here.

I was very excited to make this since I’ve been saving a very similar recipe from A Meandering Mango.  When I was making this, I decided to take a little from both recipes and make my own version.  Mine tasted very similar to a lemon bar, refreshing and light.

This cake is a perfect way to celebrate a little milestone in our house!  This past weekend we visited Philadelphia, and ran the Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon!  It was Sam’s first half, and he had fun doing it!  I’m very proud, and excited that there will be another race in the near future!

Lemon Cornmeal Cake
Adapted from: The Food Matters Cookbook (pg. 560) & A Meandering Mango

3 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup olive oil
juice & zest of 1 lemon
juice & zest of 1 lime
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup white all-purpose flour
1/2 apple, slices*
2-3 fresh figs, finely chopped*

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.  Spray your baking dish with non-stick cooking spray (or use butter or olive oil).

In a stand mixer whisk together the eggs and sugar for about 5 minutes, until fluffy and creamy.  Slowly add in the olive oil, lemon and lime juices, lemon and lime zest, and vanilla extract.  Lightly whisk the ingredients together.

In a small pot, mix together the cornmeal and salt.  Then whisk in the water, until it is lump-free.  Set the pot over medium heat, whisk frequently and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat, and cook until the water is absorbed.  Then set aside and allow to cool.

Stir in the flour and cornmeal mixture into the mixing bowl with eggs and sugar.  Stir well, then pour into the sprayed baking dish.

Arrange the apples and figs on top of the cake.  Bake for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the cake.  Allow to cool about 15 minutes before cutting it.

*Other alternatives for toppings or frosting: fresh berries, fruit soaked in liquor or honey, ground nuts or coconut, powdered sugar or a honey drizzle!  Be creative, and let me know what worked!

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14 responses to “Food Matters Project #28: Lemon Cornmeal Cake

  1. Pingback: The Food Matters Project | Fifthfloorkitchen's Blog

  2. I have been craving something light and lemony just like this recently. I think some baking will need to be in order this week. And congrats to you both on the half-marathon! Rob ran his first one with me this past Spring and I’m excited to say signed up to run the B-more Half with me too.

    • This was a great little dessert- fairly light, so I recommend! Yay for the Baltimore Half- really like that one even though it’s hilly! It looks like we may be running the DC Rock ‘n Roll in March- keep that in mind! Yay for running!

  3. I am from Philly – I miss it!!!!! Hope you had a good visit there :)

  4. I love the additions you made Evi! The lemon and polenta was so good together.

  5. Congrats on the half marathon! My goal is to run one at one point — haven’t ever run more than 9 but people say if I can do 9, I can do 13. There’s a Rock n’ Roll here in March, though?

    • Yes, you should definitely do one! This was actually my 9th, I did one and I was hooked. And yes, there is a Rock ‘n Roll in DC (around St. Patty’s Day), I highly recommend- great crowds, decent course (a little bit of a hill at some point), but just an overall great time. And yes, if you’ve done 9, you can definitely do it! =)

      • FledglingFoodie

        Awesome, thanks! I am definitely gonna check out the one next spring. That gives me plenty of time to get my act together!

  6. Oh, I am totally going to have to try making this GF! I absolutely love lemon bars and anything cornmeal. It’s like you’re inside my head or something!!

    • I’m so glad to hear. I never thought you could do a dessert with corn meal, so this was a first- very surprised. Definitely worth a shot, and doing GF wouldn’t be that hard either. Let me know how they turn out!

  7. Pingback: Philadelphia, PA | Fifthfloorkitchen's Blog

  8. Pingback: Food Matters Project Wrap-Up | Fifthfloorkitchen's Blog

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