polenta cake 2
Today I have a gluten free, blood orange, upside down cake for you, because who says January has to be a pleasureless month?
As we head into the new year, it’s very common for us to feel societal pressure to transform into our best selves. Quite literally, to lose weight. We all know how this story goes though. For the first couple of weeks on a highly restrictive diet you feel in control, superior to the weaklings around, and on your way to greatness. Then slowly (because no one can sustain a green juice and salad diet for long), bad habits begin to creep back in. Sugar before bedtime, a bit of wine here and there, and an accidental nose dive into a bag of chips.
If this is you, don’t feel badly. I’ve been there too. We all have, and it’s precisely why I am advocating for a gentler approach to “detoxing” this year. You see, when you eliminate whole food groups; sugar, dairy, carbs, you make yourself vulnerable to serious self-loathing. After a bite of brownie, “oh my gosh I ate SUGAR”, or a dinner out with friends “ahhh I can’t believe I let myself eat butter!”. This dialogue is very dangerous, consuming, and terrible for our self-esteem.
So stand strong against this nonsense and choose a radical paradigm shift. Instead of trying to eat “perfectly” one-hundred percent of the time, why not aim for balance, a way of eating that can be sustained. Because eating well is a lifestyle choice, not a fad, so it HAS to be comfortable, it absolutely must feel good.
So while I don’t propose you eat cake everyday, a little bit of sweetness here and there is good for the soul. I hope it reminds you to not be too hard on yourself. Ultimately, what is most  beautiful in life is all the cracks and flaws, and all the moments that are not perfect, but are are more real than perfect could ever be.
polenta cake 1
  • 3/4 cup of almond flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2  cup of honey
  • 1½ sticks of organic, grass fed butter, softened
  • 3 organic eggs
  • 2 tablespoons of orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
For the “Top”
  • 1 or 2 blood oranges, scrubbed and dried, sliced thinly with peel
  • 1/4 cup of honey
  • 4 tablespoons butter
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
In a 10″ round cake tin preferably, place the butter and sugar.
Gently heat the 4 tablespoons of butter and 1/3 cup of sugar in a small skillet. Once melted, pour into a cake pan and spread evenly. Arrange the sliced oranges in a single layer with some overlap, into the melted butter and sugar.
Set aside.
Mix the almond flour, corn meal, salt and baking powder together in a bowl and set.
Using a hand mixer, beat the butter, oil and sugar together until light and fluffy.
Add the orange zest and vanilla.
Whisk in the eggs.
Add the set aside flour mixture and mix evenly.
Spread the batter into the cake pan, on top of the blood orange slices.
Bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean and the cake is golden and firm to the touch.
Allow to cool for 15 minutes.
Run a knife around the sides of the cake if necessary.
Turn out over a cake stand, enjoy!