Another Sunday, another Sunday Slow Bakers recipe. We're down to our last 3 choices from Gina DePalma's Dolce Italiano. This cake uses polenta, giving it a unique texture. I liked the citrusy flavor of this cake, but had some issues with the cake. I had to cook it at least 10 minutes longer than the called for time to get the center of the cake cooked. Then, after removal from the oven, the center fell, which meant that way too much glaze accumulated in the center of the cake. Because of the extra baking time, it was a little dry around the outside of the cake. I'm not sure what I might have done to create these issues. I served it with the delicious Honey-Orange-Pistachio Ice Cream that I wrote about yesterday.
CITRUS-GLAZED POLENTA CAKE (torta di polenta con agrumi)
Makes one 9" cake, approx. 10 servings
1 1/2 cups plus 1 Tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pan
3/4 cup instant or fine polenta
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
4 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups confectioners' sugar
Preheat over to 325 degrees and position a rack in the center. Lightly grease a 9" springform pan with butter or nonstick cooking spray, dust the pan with flour, and tap to knock out the excess. Grate the zest from the lemon, lime, and orange, setting the zests aside for the cake batter and reserving the fruit for the glaze.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, polenta, baking powder, and salt and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and granulated sugar together on med-high speed until they are pale yellow and have tripled in volume, 3 to 4 minutes. Beat in reserved citrus zests.
Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the olive oil to the egg mixture; begin with one third of the dry ingredients, then add half the oil, followed by another third of the dry ingredients, beating only until each addition is incorporated. Stop the mixer and briefly scrape down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the remaining olive oil, followed by the last third of the dry ingredients.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake the cake for 25 to 30 minutes, rotating it 180 degrees halfway through the baking time to ensure even browning. The cake is down when it springs back lightly when touched and pulls away from the sides of the pan, and when a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 12 to 15 minutes, then carefully remove the sides of the pan and allow the cake to cool completely.
While the cake is cooling, make the glaze: Sift 2 cups confectioners' sugar into a large bowl. Squeeze 1 tablespoon of juice from each of the reserved citrus fruits. Add the citrus juices to the bowl and whisk until smooth. If the glaze seems too thick, add a few drops and whisk until smooth. If the glaze seems too thick, add a few drops of water until it falls easily from a spoon. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake and allow it to set until it is completely dry.
Carefully remove the bottom of the springform pan with an offset spatula and tranfer the cake to a serving plate. If desired, dust the cake with additional confectioner's sugar before serving. Any leftover cake may be wrapped in plastic and served the following the day.