Lemon & Coconut Polenta Cupcakes

Now that I have my own house, my new favourite thing to do on a weekend is have the grandparents over for afternoon tea.

Today I made some delicious finger sandwiches (with homemade egg mayo), potato salad (well more like Lyonnaise potatoes, that’s the rule when there’s onions involved right?), and got some sausage rolls from our local bakery.

So after all this savoury goodness we needed something sharp and sweet to cut through the richness. And as I love using up cupboard essentials polenta cake seemed the perfect choice.

I took inspiration from Nigella’s legendary Lemon Polenta Cake, and substituted the ground almonds for desiccated coconut (another habit of mine, using and replacing any ingredients as long as it meets what I have in the cupboard!) and I was really pleased I did. Instead of the sometimes grainy texture of polenta cake mine was chewy and the coconut gave some extra sweetness to the lemon – which I felt it needed.

I also decided to make individual cupcakes, rather than a whole cake. This might of had something to do with wanting to use my new cake stand…

Prep time 15mins, baking time 20mins, makes 12 cupcakes


100g caster sugar

100g desiccated coconut

50g polenta

100g butter

3/4 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 eggs

Zest of two lemons

Juice of two lemons

125g icing sugar


Grease cupcake tray and pre-heat the oven to 180c

In a large mixing bowl beat the butter and sugar with an electric hand-mixer ’til pale and fluffy

Mix the coconut, polenta and baking powder into the butter & sugar, then beat in the eggs

Stir in the lemon zest and spoon the mixture into the cupcake tray

Bake for 20-30mins, when cooked take out of the oven and set the tin aside to cool

Simmer the lemon juice and sugar in a saucepan ’til bubbling, then prick the cupcakes all over and pour in the  syrup slowly to drench the cakes with this delicious sauce.

Serve with a big pot of tea and let the nanas dig in!


2 thoughts on “Lemon & Coconut Polenta Cupcakes

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