Meal Type:
Prep Time:
15 minutes
Cooking Time:
1 hour
Nadia Lim

Aside from ground almonds being more nutritious than plain white flour, I much prefer dense and moist cakes, with more flavour, which often comes with using ingredients such as ground almonds and polenta. This cake is gluten free and refined sugar free, using polenta, ground almonds and honey. It's a very citrus-y cake (you'll need plenty of juicy oranges), bursting with zesty flavour. The polenta (ground-up cornmeal) gives it a lovely, slightly crumbly texture.


  • 125 g softened Pams butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • finely grated zest of 2 oranges
  • finely grated zest of 2 lemons
  • 1½–2 tsp very finely chopped rosemary leaves
  • 3 free-range eggs
  • ⅓ cup natural unsweetened yoghurt, plus extra to serve
  • ¾ cup liquid honey
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup fine polenta
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1½ tsp gluten-free baking powder
  • Orange and rosemary syrup
  • zest of 1 orange (use a vegetable peeler), cut into very thin strips
  • 1½ cups freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 tbsp liquid honey
  • 1 sprig rosemary


  1. Pre-heat oven to 160°C. Grease and line a 22 cm round spring-form cake tin with baking paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, vanilla, orange zest, lemon zest and rosemary together.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs and yoghurt together until smooth. Add to creamed mixture, along with honey, and whisk until smooth and well combined. Add orange and lemon juice to mixture along with polenta, almond flour and baking powder, and whisk until all the ingredients are well combined and you have a nice smooth batter.
  4. Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for about 60–65 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Leave in the tin to cool slightly while you make the syrup.
  5. To make the syrup, boil all the ingredients in a small pot for about 5 minutes until the liquid is reduced by about a third. Pour all over the cake in the tin, while it is still warm. Leave to stand for at least 10 minutes (for the syrup to soak in) before removing cake from tin. Serve warm or cold, with yoghurt.


If you have a food processor, simply place all the cake ingredients in it and pulse a few times until the batter is smooth and well combined, then pour into your prepared cake tin.


Rated 3 out of 5 stars

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Nadia Lim,
Images from The Great New Zealand Baking Book copyright © Lottie Hedley