Over the last four weeks the girls and I have found time each weekend to cook together. Specifically for us to take part in the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society #seasonalcultivatechallange. The aim is to use local seasonal ingredients and over the month we have made carrot cake, bacon and leek muffins, a spicy salad and today we made a delicious Lemon Polenta cake with Jersey lemons! Yes, a local farmer called Joe Freire is growing lemons in poly tunnels on the island.
Who are the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society?
The aims of the society are to promotes the Island’s rural culture and encourage the production of local produce. Through exhibitions, talks, competitions, school and farm visits and the publication of books the society demonstrates and promotes good agriculture and horticulture in Jersey. Finally, the society administers the Jersey Herd Book the register and rule book for pure breed Jersey cattle.
Seasonal Cultivate Challenge
The Season Cultivate Challenge is a local Jersey competition. A disclaimer we won the draw for taking place in week two. It is run to promote people using local ingredients and food. The prize basket of goodies provided by the society and local companies. Each week we have been posting pictures of our creations. You can look on the An Island Chef Instagram for all of our dishes. This week we made a Tuna, White Bean and Black Olive Salad with local Lemon dressing and our delicious cake.
Lemon Polenta Cake
This deliciously moist flourless cake is a little like something you might have with a coffee in Italy. It is gluten-free and made with polenta and plenty of ground almonds. We also used the delicious local lemons and Jersey butter, eggs and cream. For our garnish we have used something from a little further afield but very seasonal some Yorkshire rhubarb.
Lemon Polenta Cake
- 23cm springform cake tin
- Grease proof / baking paper
- 200 grams soft unsalted Jersey Butter
- 200 grams light Brown Sugar
- 200 grams fine Polenta
- 100 grams ground Almonds
- 1½ teaspoons Bicarbonate of Soda
- 3 large Free-range Eggs
- 2 Lemons zest and juice
- Carefully line the base of a 23cm springform cake tin with baking parchment and grease its sides lightly with a little extra soft butter. Then heat your oven to 350°F / 180°C / Gas mark 4.
- In a bowl cream the butter and sugar, in a separate bowl whisk up eggs. Mix together the polenta, almonds, and bicarb, and beat one dessert spoon of this into the butter-sugar mixture. This will help stop the mixture splitting.
- Add a little of the egg and beat in followed by more of the almond and polenta mix. Continue until the eggs and polenta / almond mix are fully incorporated, beating all the while.
- Finally, beat in the lemon zest and zest then spoon into cake tin and bake in the oven for about forty minutes.
- When cooked a small sharp knife should come out clean and the edges of the cake will have begun to shrink away from the sides of the tin. Allow to cool slightly before turning on to a wire rack.
- Oven proof dish
- Baking foil
- 500 grams Rhubarb
- 75 grams Golden Caster Sugar
- 1 piece preserved Stem Ginger
- Heat your oven 375°F / 190°C / Gas mark 5. Rinse the rhubarb and wipe clean. Trim the ends and peel down the back of the stem then into three-centimetre pieces.
- Place the rhubarb in a shallow dish and sprinkle over the sugar. Finely grate over the ginger. Cover with foil.
- Place in the oven and bake for fifteen minutes. Carefully take out of the oven and remove the foil.
- Stir with a wooden spoon. Turn the oven down to 350°F / 180°C / Gas mark 4 and return the Rhubarb for another five to ten minutes.
- Test with a small sharp knife; the rhubarb should feel tender, still have kept its shape, and the sugar dissolved into a light syrup.