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Seville Orange Polenta Cake

Seville Orange Polenta Cake

  • Author: Adapted from Bon Appetit
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x


Bring a little sunshine to a winter afternoon with this simple cake featuring candied Seville orange slices on a tender orange-scented cornmeal base.



Candied Oranges:

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 6 green cardamom pods, crushed
  • 1 small Seville orange, thinly sliced and seeds removed
  • 1 tsp orange blossom water


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup fine-ground cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 2/3 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp grated Seville orange zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Make the Candied Oranges and Syrup:

  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium-sized saucepan, bring the water, sugar, honey and cardamom to a simmer, stirring until sugar dissolves.
  3. Add the orange slices, and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 45 minutes, turning the orange slices occasionally, until the oranges are tender and the syrup is reduced to 3 cups. Remove from heat, and stir in the orange blossom water.
  4. Arrange the orange slices on the prepared baking sheet. Strain the syrup and set aside for later.

Make the Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly butter an 8” springform pan with parchment, and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. In a second bowl, beat together the olive oil and 1/4 cup sugar. Beat in the egg yolks, one at a time, then add the yogurt, orange zest and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and beat until smooth and well combined.
  4. Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, beating until firm peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter, working in two batches. Pour into the prepared pan, and smooth out into an even layer.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Using a toothpick or thin skewer, poke all over the top of the cake. Slowly drizzle the cake with 3/4 cup of the reserved syrup, wait for it to absorb, then drizzle again with another 3/4 cup of syrup. Arrange the candied orange slices all over the top of the cake. Place the pan on a wire rack and let cool completely.
  6. When ready to serve, run a thin knife around the edge of the pan to release, then remove the sides of the pan. Cut into wedges and serve drizzled with more syrup.
  • Prep Time: 45 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Category: Dessert