Sunday, February 21, 2010

Polenta Pound Cake

This delicious recipe is from Frank Stitt's Bottega Favorita cookbook. You use it as the base for Tiramisù, instead of the traditional ladyfingers. I love the texture of the cornmeal in this dense cake as well as the subtle lemon and vanilla flavors. I used a springform pan to bake it because my 9-inch cake pan doesn't have tall sides (the cookbook recommends at least 3-inch sides). You only need half a recipe for the tiramisù, so Andy and I had some for breakfast and then I froze the rest. Bake the batter in miniature loaf pans and you would have a terrific food gift for Christmas. Enjoy!

Polenta Pound Cake
6 eggs, separated
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 tsp. lemon zest
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup cornmeal (not cornmeal mix)
1 cup sour cream

1. Beat egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form; set aside. Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until creamy; add in egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Add lemon zest and vanilla.
2. Combine flour and next 2 ingredients. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Gently folk in egg whites. Pour into lightly greased springform pan.
3. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove sides of pan, and cool completely on a wire rack.

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