This is a delicious cake which just happens to be Gluten Free, it’s a tray bake so absolutely perfect for the Tea Cosy campaign for Breast  Cancer Haven.  When I was recovering from my own Breast Cancer the access to the services that Breast Cancer Haven was invaluable to me, I honestly don’t think I would have had the strength to go on and compete and succeed in MasterChef without the support of these services.


20cm x 20cm loose bottomed square Baking tin lined

Preheat oven gas mark 5

Prep Time 10 – 15 minutes

Cooking Time 40 Minutes



250gm Softened unsalted butter

250gm Golden Castor Sugar

200gm Fine Polenta

150gm Ground Almond

1.5 teaspoon Baking Powder

3 large eggs

½ teaspoon vanilla Essence

½ teaspoon Almond Essence


Cherries & Syrup

1 tin Pitted Black Cherries in Light Syrup

50gm Castor Sugar

½ Tablespoon Lemon Juice

1 cinnamon Stick

2 Star Anise.





  1. Preheat the oven and carefully line the cake tin ensuring that the base has a 1.5 cm lip so the syrup cannot escape via the spring bottom.
  2. Drain the cherries and put the juice from the can into a saucepan with the 50gm Castor Sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon and star anise. Bring to the boil and simmer until a thick syrup that coats the back of spoon is achieved. Leave to Cool
  3. Cut the cherries in half and place them into the bottom of the lined tin so they evenly cover the base
  4. Make the cake batter by putting all the ingredients into a large bowl and whisking together until thick batter achieved.
  5. Remove the Cinnamon and Star Anise from the syrup and pour over the cherries.
  6. Gently spoon the batter over the cherries and smooth over so the cherries and syrup are evenly covered.
  7. Place in a preheated oven Gas Mark 5 for 40 – 45 minutes until risen and golden. Leave to cool
  8. Turn out onto a plate and slice into equal portions should serve 12 slices.