Lemon polenta loaf

How pretty is this little lemon polenta loaf? Topped off with edible spring flowers, it’s the perfect seasonal bake to welcome the sunny months ahead. Use our basic iced lemon polenta traybake recipe and decorate to suit the occasion.

Chris Alack

MAKES 1 X 22CM LOAF

FOR THE POLENTA CAKE

180g unsalted butter, softened and diced, plus extra for the tin
200g golden caster sugar
3 large eggs
finely grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
130g ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder, sifted
100g fine polenta (for example Holland & Barrett Maize Meal)

FOR THE ICING 

150g icing sugar, sifted
2 tbsp lemon juice

FOR THE TOP

edible spring flowers, if wished

1. Preheat the oven to 190C/170Cfan/gas 5. Butter a 22cm nonstick loaf tin (about 1.3 litre capacity) and line the base with baking paper. Make the polenta cake mixture as for the basic iced lemon polenta traybake recipe, transfer to the tin, smoothing the surface, and bake for 50-60 minutes or until golden and a skewer inserted at the centre comes out clean.

2. Run a knife around the edge, leave to cool for 10 minutes, then turn it on to a cake rack, peel off the base paper and leave to cool the right way up. Make the icing as in the basic recipe and use to ice the top of the loaf, letting it run down the sides. If wished, decorate the top with edible spring flowers, for example violas. 

Recipe by Annie Bell. Food styling by Clare Lewis. Styling by Sue Radcliffe.