Grill Week Part Deux: Grilled Italian Cornmeal Cake and Fruit - Sweet Potato Chronicles - Sweet Potato Chronicles

Grill Week Part Deux: Grilled Italian Cornmeal Cake and Fruit

My hus­band would love noth­ing more than for me to come home and say, "Hey honey, we have to grill the side of a cow for the blog tonight! Wanna eat steak for days?!" To say he is a car­ni­vore is to say the least. How­ever, for our sec­ond edi­tion of grill week this sum­mer, I decided to toss a dessert on the bar­bie. After look­ing at recipe after recipe after recipe for grilled pound cake and fruit, I decided to scratch the pound cake idea. It's a dif­fi­cult task to make the but­tery con­fec­tion a healthy alter­na­tive. Although, I promise to report back to this blog one day with a healthy solu­tion. I came close with white spelt flour, but it's the but­ter issue. Clearly. They don't call it "pound" (of but­ter) cake for nothing.

Instead you're star­ing down a gluten-free slice of corn­meal yum­mi­ness. Sim­i­lar to the cof­fee cakes my grand­mother used to make, this recipe from Whole Foods uses ground almonds or almond meal as well as corn­meal. I can't believe I did this, but I made this baby on one of the hottest days of the year at our cot­tage. Scar­lett and I were lay­ing on the ham­mock and I said, "Let's go inside and make the cake." She replied, "Are you for real, mommy?" So I was on my own.

Gluten-Free Ital­ian Corn­meal Cake

1/2 cup  (1 stick) unsalted but­ter, soft­ened
3/4 cup organic sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup ricotta cheese (I used full fat)
1 cup ground almonds or almond meal
2 tea­spoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
Zest of 1 orange
1 cup yel­low corn­meal
1 tea­spoon bak­ing powder

Fruit Skew­ers

2 cups straw­ber­ries, hulled and sliced
2 peaches or nec­tarines, sliced
1 table­spoon of but­ter
1 tea­spoon of organic sugar


Pre­heat oven to 375. Lightly oil or but­ter a 9-inch spring-form bak­ing pan. In a large bowl, beat but­ter until light and creamy. Add sugar and beat. Add eggs one at a time, beat­ing after each. Mix in ricotta, almond meal, vanilla, orange juice and zest.

In a sep­a­rate bowl, mix corn­meal and bak­ing pow­der. Fold cormeal mix into wet ingre­di­ents until blended. Pour into pre­pared pan. Bake in oven for about 35 to 40 min­utes. Remove and let cool.

For Fruit Skewers:

Wash and cut fruit. Alter­nat­ing between straw­ber­ries and peaches or nec­tarines, place them on skew­ers. Melt but­ter. Place fruit on grill. Lightly brush with melted but­ter and turn. Repeat and remove from grill.

At the same time, place slices of cake onto grill as well. Grill on each sie for 1 to 2 min­utes, just long enough to warm.

Plate fruit with a slice of corn­meal cake and serve with addi­tional berries and Greek yogurt or whip cream.

After I got the cake in the oven, we killed the bak­ing time by doing a lit­tle fishing.

After our long day of fish­ing, kayak­ing and paint­ing rocks, we had our cake and fruit for dessert. I served it with some home­made Greek yogurt I get from the beau­ti­ful Thoula who runs a restaurant/convenience store in our tiny cot­tage town. It's beyond deli­cous and bet­ter than any Greek yogurt I've ever tasted. (I've never been to Greece, but I'm pretty sure this stuff is as good.) The cool of the yogurt, sweet­ness of the skew­ers with the but­tery, course cake was a tiny slice of heaven, espe­cially if you con­sider it was on the heals of a gor­geous day spent together in the sun.


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