mandarin and polenta syrup cake

  • 400g (4 small) whole seedless mandarins
  • 6 eggs
  • 50g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • cup (110g) instant polenta
  • 1 cup (120g) almond meal
  • 1½ cups (330g) caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (125ml) mandarin juice (from 3 small mandarins)
  • cup (25g) flaked almonds, toasted
  1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Place the mandarins in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil over high heat and cook for 1 hour or until soft. Drain, and allow to cool slightly.
  2. Place the mandarins in a food processor, add the eggs, butter, polenta, almond meal, 1 cup (220g) sugar, baking powder and vanilla, and process until smooth and combined.
  3. Pour into a greased 20cm springform cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Cook for 45 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Allow to cool slightly before turning out onto a wire rack.
  4. Place the mandarin juice and remaining sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to the boil and cook for 2–3 minutes or until slightly reduced and syrupy.
  5. Pour the syrup over the warm cake and allow to soak for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with the almonds to serve. Serves 8–10.

TIP: You can substitute mandarins for 2 small oranges (400g) and ½ cup (125ml) orange juice in this cake. Remove any seeds after cooking.

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