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Savoury Italian Polenta Cake
Serves 16 as an appetiser
A moist savoury polenta cake with Parmesan cheese, mixed olives, sun blush tomatoes and pesto and topped with cream cheese. Serve as a party alternative to quiche.
Preparation Time: 15-20 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes, plus 30 minutes in the oven, plus cooling and chilling time
- 225g fine grade polenta or cornmeal
- 125g plain flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda baking soda
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 115g Parmesan cheese, finely grated
- 100g mixed pitted green and black olives, drained and halved
- 100g sun blush tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 3 large eggs
- 500ml buttermilk
- 70g butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons pesto
- 300g soft cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon pesto
- 20 small sprigs fresh basil
- 2 sun blush tomatoes, cut into thin strips
- 4 pitted black olives, cut into thin strips
Baking paper to line the tin
Pre-heat the oven 200°C/180°C fan/Gas Mark 6
- Line the base of the cake tin with baking paper and set to one side.
- Combine the polenta, flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
- Measure the buttermilk into a 1 litre (xx fl oz) capacity jug, add the eggs, melted butter and pesto and whisk together.
- Add the liquid ingredients to the dry and mix until just combined. Stir in the grated cheese, olives and tomatoes.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared springform tin and bake for 30 minutes until the centre is firm and the top is golden brown.
Allow the cake to cool in the tin before removing the springform and transferring the cake from the base on to a large serving plate, removing the baking paper from the base.
- This cake will keep until the next day, but is best eaten on the day of making. Store the cake covered in the refrigerator until required; if the cake has been chilled for a longer period of time allow it to stand at room temperature for ½ hour before serving for the best flavour.
- Chilled fresh pesto often has a more vibrant green colour than the jarred, store-cupboard variety. Look for it next to the fresh pasta in the chiller cabinet.