Bolognese Polenta and Apple Cake

Updated February 23, 2016
This image courtesy of David Loftus

This is a superb moist cake, a bit like a clafoutis in France, but by adding breadcrumbs and using polenta it becomes very much like an Italian bread and butter pudding. It’s something that Italians would cook in the embers of the fire after dinner.


Cooking Methodbaking



Total Timeunder 1 hour

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionFamily Get-together

Recipe Coursedessert

Dietary Considerationhalal, kosher, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegetarian


Taste and Texturebuttery, fruity, savory, spiced, sweet, tangy, tart

Type of Dishcake


  • A knob of butter
  • 100g/3 ½ oz polenta
  • 200g/7oz plain flour, sifted
  • 100g/3 ½ oz stale breadcrumbs
  • 100g/3 ½ oz caster sugar (granulated sugar), plus extra for dusting
  • 500ml/18fl oz full-fat milk (whole milk)
  • 3 large free-range eggs, preferably organic, beaten
  • 100g/3 ½ oz runny honey
  • 55ml/2fl oz olive oil
  • 100g/3 ½ oz dried figs, chopped or torn up
  • 100g/3 ½ oz raisins or sultanas (golden raisins)
  • 500g/1lb 2oz firm eating apples, peeled, cored and roughly diced
  • ½ a teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Zest of 2 oranges
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4 and butter a shallow 28cm/11 inch, loose-bottomed cake tin. Mix the polenta, flour, breadcrumbs and sugar in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, eggs, honey and olive oil. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture, making sure you stir it all together well. Add the figs, raisins, apples, cinnamon, orange and lemon zest and salt, and stir again.

Pour the mixture into your cake tin and bake for about 50 minutes. Keep an eye on it – you may need to cover it with some foil if you find that it starts to brown too much at the edges.

Before serving, sprinkle over some caster sugar. Then make sure you eat it warm – lovely with a dollop of crème fraîche and a glass of Vin Santo!



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The recipes do not always print all of the ingredients. Maybe there could be a conversion added since we do not use the metric system and there should be a friendly printing version. One does not need a pic of Ellen Degeneras advertising a no facelift by Dr. Oz. Cynthia

hanelaine- I felt the same way until i bought a scale-now I use it all the time. I have a simple oxo scale which fits easily into a drawer and not so expensive.

Sure would love to try this recipe but showing ingredients by weight is a real problem. I have enough "stuff" in my kitchen without having to add a scale to the pile. Measurements would be much better than weights.


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