If you didn’t already sign up for Julia Jaksic’s session at Whole Foods Bowery tonight, which is a part of its How I Cook At Home series of New York chef-led classes, here is a sneak peak of what you’re missing. The Employees Only chef will be talking about polenta, and will let participants in on her recipe for Polenta Pound Cake with Summer Fruits.
“One of the reasons I chose to talk about polenta in my session is because it’s one of those things I always have in my pantry,” confesses Jaksic. It’s really versatile. You can have soft polenta, or make it firmer, you can bake it. You can keep it in the pantry and it lasts forever. You can eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert.”
Polenta Pound Cake with Summer Fruits
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup medium-grind yellow cornmeal
1 tsp baking powder
In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, and salt until fluffy and pale yellow. Add the vanilla, then eggs and egg yolks one at a time, making sure everything is well incorporated before adding the next.
Sift the flour, polenta, and baking powder and incorporate these into the mixture. Pour the mixture into a 9×5-inch loaf pan, buttered and dredged with polenta. In an oven preheated to 350 degrees, bake for 50-55 minutes.
Toss your favorite summer fruits in sugar (preferably with a vanilla bean cut in half), and let them sit for at least 30 minutes. Remove the pound cake from the oven, and let it cool before slicing it and spooning the fruit over top. Garnish with whipped cream or mascarpone.