A glorious polenta-based cake layered with lemon curd and finished with torched meringue frosting, fitting for the grandest celebrations. Serve with a glass of Sichel Sauternes and enjoy! 

Serves 10-12

Polenta sponge cakes:
3 large free range eggs
1½ cups caster sugar
2 tsp Heilala vanilla bean paste
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil (EVO)
¾ cup thevineco Riesling verjuice
1½ cups Sabato gluten-free flour, sifted
1½ tsp gluten-free baking powder
¾ cup La Grande Ruota yellow quick cook polenta
Fresh As freeze-dried raspberries, to decorate

1 jar Darlington’s Lemon Curd
1 cup Zany Zeus mascarpone

Italian meringue frosting:
1 cup caster sugar
200ml water
4 large free range egg whites
½ tsp cream of tartar

For the polenta sponge cakes, preheat oven to 180°C. Grease three 20cm spring-form cake tins and line bases with baking paper.

Place eggs, sugar and vanilla into a bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until thick and pale. Add oil and verjuice, whisk briefly and gently to combine. Fold in dry ingredients. Pour mixture into prepared cake tins, dividing evenly in three.

Bake cakes for 30-35 minutes or until mixture springs back when touched. Cool in the tins for 15 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Mix lemon curd and mascarpone together until well combined. Sandwich cake layers together with lemon curd and mascarpone.

For the Italian meringue, put sugar and water in a small pot and bring to the boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium and cook for about 10-15minutes or until syrup reaches the soft ball stage (115°C). Brush down the sides of the saucepan occasionally with a wet pastry brush to remove any sugar crystals.

In a clean bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the egg whites with the cream of tartar until soft peaks form.

Meanwhile, bring the sugar syrup to the hard ball stage (121°C). With the mixer running, gradually pour the hot syrup into the meringue. Beat until cooled to room temperature and meringue is very thick and glossy, this may take 10-15 minutes.

Spread meringue all over the outside of the cake. If you have a blow torch then torch the meringue to toast or simply leave plain, as it will still be delicious. Decorate the top with freeze-dried berries.

Recipe by Julie Le Clerc



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