This polenta cake recipe from chef Olivier Sanchez, is not only gluten-free, it’s vegan too. Who knew polenta could look and taste so good
Olivier suggests rhubarb for this recipe but says you can use any other fruit you like. To get the most nutritionally, go for seasonal options. Olivier explains: ‘rhubarb with raspberries and yuzu brings some sweet sharpness to these small but perfectly formed mini cakes that will delight adults and kids alike. The recipe can also be used to make a larger cake instead of individual ones.’
Serves: 12–15 mini cakes
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
- 250 g rhubarb (peeled, sliced or roughly diced)
- 125 g raspberries
- 125 g xylitol (or coconut sugar/nectar, brown rice syrup)
- 125 ml almond or oat mylk
- 100 g wholegrain rice flour
- 100 g fine polenta
- 50 g coconut oil (melted)
- 6 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp poppy seeds (optional)
- 2 tbsp arrowroot
- 1 tbsp plain Yuzu juice
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 orange (grated zest)
- Pinch of salt
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180˚c. Line the cake tins or muffin tray with paper cases and set aside.
2. Prepare the vegan buttermylk by combining the mylk and vinegar together.
3. Make the egg substitute by soaking the chia seeds in water using a small ramequin. Set aside to rest.
If you are not vegan, you can use an actual egg.
4. Prepare the rhubarb and place in a bowl together with the xylitol, the orange zest, and the vanilla paste for 15–20.
5. Add the dry ingredients to a large kitchen bowl and make a well in the centre.
6. Combine all the wet ingredients together with the rhubarb mixture and its juices. You can either pass the chia seeds through a sieve or keep them whole with the liquid. Add the melted coconut oil, and mix until just combined with a silicon spatula. Finally, add the raspberries and poppy seeds (if you want more crunch and colour).
6. Spoon the mix in the cases and bake for 10 minutes. Then reduce the heat to 160˚c and bake for a further 10 minutes. The top of the cake should be bouncy, crusty and golden brown. Insert a skewer in the middle of the cakes to check if they are done. It should come out clean.
7. Place the cake tins on a cooling rack and let them cool
Olivier Sanchez is a qualified Naturopath, Iridologist and Michelin star trained Natural Chef and Nutritional Therapist specialising in stress and stress-related conditions, including inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. He has lectured at the College of Naturopathic Medicine and is currently working as a Private Chef. His client list includes A-listers, British and Middle-Eastern royalty.