Gluten-Free Shortbread

Gluten-Free Shortbread is a melt in mouth buttery biscuit with a touch of crunch. A classic Scottish recipe which uses oat flour. It’s incredibly quick to make and so versatile that you can adapt it to endless flavour variations.

Gluten-free shortbread on a wooden board cut into pieces

The quest for the perfect Gluten-Free Shortbread was not one undertaken lightly. I have been working on this recipe for about as long as I have been gluten-free. I have an absolute weakness for shortbread. Although humble in origin, the beautiful buttery taste elevates the confection to a more special status.

However the right flour combination for this particular bake eluded me for a long time. I threw myself a mini party when achieving this final version. It ticks all the boxes to create the perfect shortbread in taste and texture.

What is shortbread?

Shortbread is a traditional Scottish confection made with sugar, butter and flour. The earliest printed recipe is credited to a Mrs McLintock in 1736. However, the first versions as a bread dough to which melted butter was added can be traced back to medieval times.

Shortbread needs to have a beautiful buttery taste and a slight bite upfront that gives way to a sandy crumb. In modern versions white rice flour is often included to encourage the crunch. Conversely cornflour is sometimes added to accentuate a soft sandy texture.

Shortbread is so much more than a humble biscuit. In fact its national status as a ‘speciality item of flour confectionary’ was fought vehemently by the Scottish Association of Master Bakers so that it would not be taxed as a biscuit. It is often gifted at Christmas in decorative tins and certainly not out of place at high tea.

Three bowls of gluten-free flours

Gluten-free flours

After many recipe tests where the shortbread was either too crumbly, too gummy or not enough bite I eventually discovered the perfect flour combo:

  • Oat flour
  • Cornmeal
  • Tapioca flour

Gluten-free oat flour is used for its light tender crumb and delicious butterscotch taste which works beautifully with the butter and vanilla.

Oat flour substitution: Usually I might suggest a substitute as even gluten-free oat flour can be difficult to digest for hardcore intolerances. However, if this is the case for you I would like to point you towards a slightly different flour combination (scroll further down to see).

Cornmeal. In regular shortbread the wheat flour can be cut with white rice flour to add crunch. I found without the wheat flour to temper it the white rice flour made the shortbread claggy. Cornmeal is an excellent substitution. I found a very fine white cornmeal which worked well here but any fine cornmeal will do.

Tapioca Flour. This is the starch we need to stop our shortbread from crumbling apart.

Click here for instant access

How do you make gluten-free shortbread?

Shortbread is a minimal effort type of bake. It takes about 10 minutes to mix all the ingredients together and only 30 minutes in the oven.

  1. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the vanilla extract.
  3. Sift the flours together with the salt then beat in.
  4. Press into a cake tin.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes.
  6. Leave to cool in the tin for an hour before removing onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

Process shots for gluten-free shortbread. showing the butter and sugar in a bowl and then mixed up

Process shots for gluten-free shortbread. showing the dough in the mixing bowl and then in the cake tin ready for the oven.

Baker’s Tips:

  • Use the best unsalted butter you can find. It really makes a difference as this is the overriding flavour of your shortbread.
  • Use good quality vanilla extract.
  • The shortbread won’t brown too much. This is correct, you want it to be quite pale with a slight nod towards going golden.
  • Leave the shortbread to cool completely before cutting. Otherwise it has a tendency to crumble. The shortbread will firm up as it cools.

How do you make gluten-free shortbread without oat flour?

If you can’t tolerate oat flour then I recommend a slightly different flour combination. It is just as delicious but the bite of the shortbread is not as short. The recipe and ingredients list are exactly the same except remove the oat flour and tapioca flour. Instead use:

  • 175g almond flour
  • 150g very fine white cornmeal

Note that this version doesn’t need any starch. The almond flour has enough protein to hold the shortbread together.

Shortbread Flavour Variations

Plain unadorned shortbread is delicious as it is but if you wanted to jazz it up slightly then let’s go for it. Here the shortbread is drizzled with 2 tablespoons melted dark chocolate, 2 tablespoons dulce de leche and a crumble of sea salt. The dulce de leche is warmed up slightly to make for easy drizzling.

Gluten-free shortbread drizzled with chocolate and dulce de leche

If chocolate and caramel aren’t your thing then there are so many other routes you can go. The earliest versions of shortbread included preserved lemon, orange peel, nuts and caraway seeds. All of which would be delicious. Here are some other suggestions to add to your dough before baking.

Lemon Shortbread – zest 1 lemon
Lavender Shortbread – 2 tablespoons of fresh chopped lavender flowers
Strawberry Black Pepper Shortbread – 3 tablespoons of freeze-dried strawberry powder and ¼ teaspoon of cracked black pepper.
Ginger Shortbread – 2 tablespoons diced stem ginger and 1 teaspoon ground ginger.
Iced Shortbread – Beat 180g icing sugar with the juice of 1 small lemon together and spoon over your cooled shortbread. You can also flavour the icing with any of the flavour variations mentioned above.

Serving suggestions for shortbread

Although an excellent accompaniment to tea or coffee, shortbread can often elevate a dessert. Try serving shortbread alongside:

  • Chocolate mousse
  • Affogato
  • Lemon Posset
  • Strawberries and Cream
  • Crumbled over ice cream

Side view of Gluten-free shortbread drizzled with chocolate and dulce de leche

If you like this classic British recipe then you may like:

Gluten-Free Eccles Cakes
Vinegar Cake
Gluten-Free Victoria Sponge
Gluten-Free Scones with Strawberry Jam and Clotted Cream

If you make this Gluten-Free Shortbread then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Gluten-Free Shortbread

This Gluten-Free Shortbread is a melt in mouth buttery biscuit with a touch of crunch. A classic Scottish recipe using oat flour.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Bread
Cuisine: Scottish
Keyword: gluten-free shortbread
Servings: 8
Calories: 410kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

  • 225 g unsalted butter
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 150 g oat flour
  • 125 g very fine white cornmeal
  • 50 g tapioca flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan assisted oven/gas mark 4.
  • Line and grease a 20cm (8 incround cake tin.
  • Beat the butter and sugar together for a couple of minutes until light and creamy.
  • Add the vanilla extract and stir to combine.
  • Sift together the oat flour, cornmeal, tapioca flour and salt then add to the butter and sugar. Beat until it is fully incorporated.
  • Tip the dough into the baking tin and press into the tin using your fingertips.
  • Using a sharp knife gently mark four lines across the diagonal of the shortbread to mark out the intended slices.
  • Pierce the surface of the shortbread with the tines of a fork a few times to let the air escape.
  • Bake for 30 minutes until the top is just starting to turn golden.
  • Rest the shortbread for an hour in the tin before removing. Leave to cool completely on a cooling rack before cutting into wedges.

Notes

  • Use good unsalted butter. This is the main taste of your shortbread so you need it to be the best you can find. Organic, unsalted butter direct from the farm if possible. You will notice the difference.
  • Use good vanilla extract. Not vanilla essence.
  • Cooling. Leave the shortbread too cool completely before cutting. It needs time to firm up otherwise it will be too crumbly to cut.

Nutrition

Calories: 410kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 153mg | Potassium: 146mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 14.1% | Calcium: 1.9% | Iron: 7.9%

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Gluten-free shortbread on a wooden board cut into pieces

Gluten-Free Scones with Quick Strawberry Jam and Clotted Cream

These Gluten-Free Scones are made with buttermilk and without xanthan gum but instead a delicious blend of alternative flours for depth of flavour. A perfect afternoon tea served with a quick strawberry jam set with chia seeds and thick clotted cream.

Side shot of a gluten-free scone filled with clotted cream and strawberry jam on a wire rack

There is nothing more indulgent than going for a proper afternoon tea. The kind you have in a fancy hotel with a proper tea menu, huge fluffy white scones, delicate cucumber sandwiches and mile high slices of sponge cake. I haven’t been for ages. Luke and I wanted to go as my last treat before Beau was born but then I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes so that plan was nixed. We should really put it back on the agenda now the newborn days are over. Celebrating the first few months of Beau’s life seems a pretty good reason to treat ourselves.

side shot of a stack of gluten-free scones

It’s the proper presentation of the scones which I find so alluring, perched atop the tier of sandwiches and patisserie, wrapped in clean white linen, waiting to be discovered. I always go for the scones first. If it’s a first class establishment then these scones will be warm, fresh from the oven and that is when they are at their absolute best. They must then be layered high with thick golden Cornish clotted cream and vibrant strawberry jam. Whether you slather your scone with the clotted cream or jam first will betray whether you are of the Cornish or Devonshire persuasion.

Overhead shot of a plate of strawberries, a napkin and gluten-free scones on a wire rack

The presence of scones will always elevate an occasion. A pot of tea shared with my mum is suddenly made into a fanciful affair by the inclusion of scones. We might as well be partaking our cream team with the Duchess of Bedford at Woburn Abbey. The proper china must come out, including the teapot, and I feel an unexplained need to set the table properly with a tablecloth and decant the jam and clotted cream into bowls rather than dipping our spoon into jars and tubs.

side shot of gluten-free scones on a wire rack

Yet scones also feel rather homely. They are definitely a comfort to bake. You don’t need an expensive food mixer or a specific kind of cake tin. Just a cheap mixing bowl, a wooden spoon and a standard round cookie cutter. You can dive your hands in, rubbing the butter with the flour in your fingertips, feeling the texture of the dough in between your hands as you bring it all together. It’s so satisfying and they don’t take long at all from start to finish. Within 45 minutes you can go from a faint craving to taking your first bite out of your homemade scone without any fluster.

Side shot of a gluten-free scone on a wire rack

Gluten-Free Scones with Buttermilk

I have a few scone recipes on the blog but no traditional plain gluten-free scones, the kind I turn to frequently when a cream tea is required. This gluten-free scone recipe is made with buttermilk for a tender crumb and a slight tang.

Overhead shot of a gluten-free scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam on a wire rack with a plate of strawberries and flowers

Gluten-Free Flour

For the flour choice in these Gluten-Free Scones I have used a specific home blend of alternative flours. I try and vary my gluten-free baking recipes with ingredients that are easy to find like the plain gluten-free flour blend you can pick up at the supermarket and those that indulge my love of alternative flours. It’s not going to suit everyone that this scone recipe uses a mix of five different flours but flour is the main ingredient in a scone recipe and has nowhere to hide amongst the other ingredients. To achieve a very good gluten-free scone the flour choice needs to be right.

I am aware that I have a very particular obsession with alternative flours and it is not usual for a larder to be stocked with every single variation on the market. However a few choice alternative flours are so worth investing in even if you are not gluten-free. Sweet rice flour, oat flour and tapioca flour are my mainstays. To understand the use of every flour in this recipe I urge you to read through my guide to Gluten-Free Flours. The depth of flavour you achieve from specific combinations is surprising and you can aim for a greater control over texture, moistness and fluffiness than just using a plain ready-made gluten-free blend can provide.

Side shot of a gluten-free scone filled with clotted cream and strawberry jam on a wire rack

Gluten-Free Scones without xanthan gum

This gluten-free scone recipe is also without xanthan gum, a regular presence in a lot of gluten-free baking. It’s often used as a thickening agent or stabiliser to help prevent crumbly and dry gluten-free goods. It’s not something I particularly publicise but I never bake with xanthan gum. I don’t find I can digest it very well so steer clear. Instead I achieve my texture in baking from the right blend of alternative flours. Again, hence the need for so many.

Overhead shot of a bowl of strawberry jam next to a bowl of strawberries and gluten-free scones on a wire rack

Quick Strawberry Jam

Of course you can use a good strawberry jam bought from the farmers’ market to cut down on your labour but a quick fresh strawberry jam is easy enough and has less sugar. These July strawberries I have been buying recently have been so delicious, absolutely full of flavour. I use lemon juice to perk up the strawberry taste, a dash of caster sugar and chia seeds to create an instant luscious set.

overhead shot of a bowl of clotted cream next to a bowl of strawberries

Clotted Cream

Clotted cream is a fabulous ingredient, I could easily eat it with a spoon but the golden hued crust that you have to break through to get there is the real chef’s delight. Clotted cream is the only choice for a proper afternoon tea. I remember being served the most delicious homemade scones once in Brighton, utterly ruined by the airy canned whipped cream served with them. It’s the clotted cream that really achieves the high end cream team that we all hope for whilst enjoying our fresh homemade scones warm from the oven.

Side shot of a gluten-free scone filled with clotted cream and strawberry jam on a wire rack

Gluten-Free Scones with Quick Strawberry Jam and Clotted Cream

These Gluten-Free Scones are made with buttermilk and without xanthan gum but instead a delicious blend of alternative flours for depth of flavour. A perfect afternoon tea served with a quick strawberry jam set with chia seeds and thick clotted cream.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time18 mins
Total Time38 mins
Course: Afternoon Tea
Cuisine: British
Keyword: gluten-free scone recipe, gluten-free scones, scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream
Servings: 9 scones
Calories: 562kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

Gluten-Free Scones

  • 175 g sweet rice flour
  • 125 g oat flour
  • 100 g millet flour
  • 50 g potato starch
  • 50 g tapioca flour
  • 100 g cold unsalted butter sliced thinly
  • 115 g caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs + 1 extra for glazing
  • 200 ml buttermilk

Quick Strawberry Jam

  • 500 g strawberries
  • juice 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 250 g clotted cream

Instructions

Buttermilk Gluten-Free Scones

  • Preheat oven to 160°C/140°C fan/gas mark 3/320°F.
  • Whisk the flours together in a large mixing bowl then add the butter, rubbing together with your fingertips to create breadcrumbs.
  • Add the sugar, baking powder and salt and mix well.
  • Pour the milk into a jug and whisk in the eggs until just combined then pour into the centre of the scone mixture.
  • At first stir the liquid ingredients in with a wooden spoon then tip out onto a clean work surface and using your hands bring the dough together, turning and folding, until it is no longer sticky. Use a bit of extra gluten-free flour on the work surface if it is starting to stick.
  • Once you have brought the dough together into a ball, press it down into an even circle 1 inch thick.
  • Cut out the scones using 7cm cutter.
  • Place the scones onto a clean baking tray. Whisk the extra egg with a splash of milk and brush onto the surface of each scone, making sure not to let it drip down the sides, else your scones will not rise evenly.
  • Bake the scones for 18 minutes. Let the scones rest on the baking tray for 5 minutes then remove and let cool on a wire rack.

Quick Strawberry Jam

  • Hull the strawberries then place them in a medium sized saucepan with the lemon juice and caster sugar.
  • Cook for 10 minutes until the strawberries have broken down, then remove from the heat and stir in the chia seeds.
  • Chill until needed.
  • Serve the scones split open with the clotted cream and strawberry jam

Notes

These scones are best eaten straight away or a few hours after baking. They go stale rather quickly overnight.

Nutrition

Calories: 562kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 175mg | Potassium: 439mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 9.7% | Vitamin C: 39.9% | Calcium: 13.9% | Iron: 10.1%

SHOP THE RECIPE

Although the metal cookie cutters may look a bit more stylish I always use these KitchenCraft Double-Edged Plastic Biscuit/Pastry Cutters with Storage Box (Set of 7) – White. They are the perfect range of sizes, they are plastic so don’t rust and can go in the dishwasher. Anything that can go in the dishwasher makes my life so much easier.

I use this KitchenCraft MasterClass Non-Stick Baking Tray, 35 x 25 cm (14″ x 10″) for all my cookies, biscuits, scones. It’s a great size and comfortably holds all of these 9 scones so you don’t have to bake in batches. It’s non-stick so the scones lift off easily from the tray and doesn’t require any baking parchment or greasing.

It’s not easy to buy sweet rice flour in the UK, but it’s a flour I use all the time. It is possible to pick up sweet rice flour in chinatown but it is not certified gluten-free so for the coeliacs among us and those that have a very strong intolerance it is not ideal. But I have finally found a brand which is 100% certified gluten-free and it’s fantastic. The brand is yourhealthstore Premium Gluten Free Sweet Rice Flour (glutinous) 1kg

Oat flour can be picked up at most health food shops and if I run out that’s where I head to. However, like all alternative flours it can be expensive so I find the most economical way is to buy it online. I go through bags of the stuff as it’s the flour I use most regularly so I like to buy in bulk. My favourite brand is Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Whole Grain Oat Flour 400 g (Pack of 4) at a reasonable price. Even better if you go the subscribe and save option.

I order my millet flour through Amazon like most of my flours and the brand I like the best is Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Millet Flour 500 g (Pack of 4). It’s more economical to buy it this way and I love Bob’s Red Mill as it’s certified gluten-free.

It’s not difficult to get hold of tapioca flour in the UK. You can often find 100g pots of Doves Farm Tapioca Flour in the supermarket but it’s quite costly and doesn’t give you very much. You can find more varied brands in health food shops in bags of about 500g. The cost depends entirely on the brand you purchase. My preferred brand is Bob’s Red Mill GF Tapioca Flour 500 g (Pack of 2) as it’s certifiably gluten-free and I order it through Amazon.

I use chia seeds a lot in chia seed pudding, in my granola bars, sprinkled in my porridge and in smoothies so I buy them in bulk. I like RealFoodSource Whole Natural Dark Chia Seeds 2kg (2 x 1kg bags) with FREE Chia Recipe Ebook. They are just reliably good.

Some of the links above are affiliate links so if you decide to buy your flour using the link then I will get a small commission from Amazon at no cost to you. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

If you like this recipe you may like…

Strawberry Redcurrant Jam

Honey Apple Spice Scones

Honey Apple Spice Scones {gluten-free}

Cheddar Olive Buttermilk Scones

Gluten-Free Cheddar Olive Buttermilk Scones

Gluten-Free Flours: An Introduction

text saying Gluten-Free Flours: how to start gluten-free baking, which flours to use and how to convert wheat recipes: fromthelarder.co.uk

Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is made with whole oranges boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake was my first foray into gluten-free baking a good few years ago when I first began my blog and for a while was just one of two gluten-free cakes I offered on my cake stall. I made this cake every week for nearly a year when I first got started and to be frank I got a little bored of it. After its long absence from the stall though I have begun making it again this year and have been struck anew with now much I love it. My customers also agree as it flies off the stall every week.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

A polenta cake is one of the most recognisably gluten-free bakes. Sometimes it can be disappointing and dry but this Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is always beautifully moist and delicious due to the whole oranges and the ground almonds. It is the only orange polenta cake recipe you need and the hint of rosemary makes it just that little bit more special. The ingredients are few and easy to find in any supermarket but if you can’t find blood oranges at this time of year then regular oranges are just as delicious.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

I first posted this recipe back in February 2014 but with my forgotten love of the cake and the dear need for better images and a more detailed recipe I decided to repost today.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

I felt sad to delete the wording of my original post with its references to walking Billy Buddy as a puppy and the horrible howling weather the UK was obviously experiencing at the time so for my own personal posterity I have included the original wording of the post below.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

From The Larder February 10th 2014

This wouldn’t be a very realistic British blog without giving the weather its due attention. The reason we Brits chat about the weather so much is that we suffer through every type and gosh do we suffer. There is always some extreme weather condition on the go to govern our train times, the roads and our moods. This time round it is these howling winds, whipping the coastline up into a frenzy.
It may be true that we live in London so the likelihood of us getting washed out to sea in a tidal wave during our walks with the puppy are quite slim but I see it as no reason not to be extra cautious. I’ll come out when Easter is here, the chicks are trilling and the flowers blooming. So for now I’ll batten down the hatches, flick on The Voice and nestle down in blankets on the sofa with tea and cake.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

This cake is as much of a store cupboard cake as you can get. My fruit bowl is always filled with sweet blood oranges at this time of year which I hoard like I belong on a reality TV show to eek out the most of their too short season. Everything else was all present and correct in my kitchen and I was able to use the last of the polenta which has been languishing in my cupboard for far too long which cheered me up immensely. I always love using up the end of ingredients, allowing my other tins and jars more room to breathe.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

The absence of any flour also means it is an excellent gluten- free option and the pureed orange and syrup soaked sponge wards off any sort of dryness. We enjoyed this cake with a dollop of whipped double cream but it would be equally delicious with crème fraiche or without anything at all. I think the cup of tea is obligatory though.

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free. Whole oranges are boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.

Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake

This Blood Orange Rosemary Polenta Cake is made with whole oranges boiled then pureed to create an incredibly moist and intensely citrusy cake spiked with a hint of rosemary.
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr 40 mins
Course: Cake
Cuisine: British
Keyword: blood orange rosemary polenta cake, blood orange rosemary polenta cake recipe, gluten-free polenta cake
Servings: 10 people
Calories: 322kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

For the caramelised blood orange slices

  • 1 blood orange
  • 120 g caster sugar

For the cake:

  • 450 g blood oranges (about 4 medium sized oranges)
  • 6 eggs
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 125 g polenta
  • 125 g ground almonds
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • tablespoons finely chopped rosemary leaves
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

Caramelised Blood Orange Slices

  • First prepare the caramelised oranges for decorating the top of the cake. Pour the extra 120g caster sugar into a medium saucepan with 120ml of water. Bring to a low boil until the sugar dissolves.
  • Cut the extra blood orange into thin slices then submerge into the sugar syrup. Bring the syrup back to a boil then simmer for 5 minutes. Turn the heat off.
  • Remove the orange slices from the sugar syrup (reserve the syrup for pouring over the cake later) with a slotted spoon then place on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Bake for 10 minutes at 150°C. Turn the orange slices over and bake for a further 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside whilst you make the cake.

The Cake

  • Place the whole oranges into a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 1 hour.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 150°C and line and grease a 20cm round cake tin.
  • Remove the oranges from the saucepan and cut in half to remove and discard the pips.
  • Place the oranges into a blender and blitz until smooth.
  • Set the oranges aside for a moment whilst you beat the eggs and sugar in either a large mixing bowl or food mixer until pale and thick.
  • Then mix in the pureed orange.
  • Add the polenta, ground almonds, baking powder, rosemary leaves and salt. Beat until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Pour the batter in the prepared cake tin and bake for 10 minutes then turn the heat up to 160°C. Bake for a further 30 minutes until firm to the touch and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Once the cake is ready, remove from the oven and whilst the cake is still in the tin prick the surface all over with a cocktail stick. Pour the reserved blood orange sugar syrup all over the surface of the cake.
  • Let the cake cool in the cake tin before removing. Decorate with the blood orange slices and fresh rosemary then serve.

Notes

  • Original recipe adapted from Veerle de Pooter -  90 Years of KitchenAid-The Cookbook

Nutrition

Calories: 322kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 98mg | Sodium: 155mg | Potassium: 256mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 5.6% | Vitamin C: 30.1% | Calcium: 11.5% | Iron: 7.2%

Favourite Gluten-Free Cakes

I sell my cakes at local farmers’ markets in London but lucky for those who don’t live nearby I also love sharing the recipes for all the cakes I sell and if you want to receive more of my cake stall recipes then I have a FREE mini e-book of the top 3 Favourite Gluten-Free Cakes which are on my stall including Fig, Almond and Salted Honey Cake, Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes and Minted Brownies. The recipes are really special to me and if you want a copy of them then just click the button below!

Download

Eccleswell Tart

Eccleswell Tart

This recipe is not yet gluten-free

This tart came about as a way of marrying my two favourite English tea time treats, Eccles cakes and Bakewell tarts. I don’t always want to choose between them at the bakery and it is not always prudent to have both. This way I can have both but not feel too greedy, the ginormous wedge I serve myself probably nullifies my efforts though.

Eccleswell Tart  |  Stroud Green Larder

I have made this tart several times now over the past year and have been meaning to include it in my blog but it has never quite survived long enough to reach the photography stage.  It is a really lovely tart, a bit more going on than your average Bakewell tart but the frangipane and the juicy fruit marry up beautifully. It is the perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea.

Eccleswell Tart  |  Stroud Green Larder

I usually make my own ground almonds as I find shop bought just tastes a little bland. Sometimes that is what you are looking for in this ingredient but on this occasion I toasted and ground up my own almonds. I toasted them a little over here but it was a happy accident as it gave this particular tart a lovely biscuit flavour and a gold frangipane colour. If you don’t want to go to the trouble then you can use shop bought ground almonds totally guilt free but the results are slightly different as although the frangipane topping is softer it is not quite as almondy. I suggest using a dash of almond extract along with the vanilla extract if you are going that way.

Eccleswell Tart  |  Stroud Green Larder

My Eccles cake mixture depends totally on what I have in my cupboard. I was lucky enough this weekend to have a grand stock of dried fruit but even so the marriage of currants and sultanas is traditional and in my mind the best. I couldn’t resist adding a little stem ginger though as I think it’s pretty fabulous. The marmalade was included in lieu of mixed peel since a certain somebody in my household refuses point blank to eat mixed peel and this way I can still achieve the citrus note without offending my husband. If you still happen to have mincemeat leftover from Christmas though then by all means use it here to clear out your cupboards. Eccles cakes are just boozeless and suetless mincemeat anyway.

Eccleswell Tart  |  Stroud Green Larder

Eccleswell Tart

For the Pastry
270g plain flour
100g unsalted butter, fridge cold
100g caster sugar
pinch of salt
1 egg + 1 egg yolk

For the Eccles Mixture
20g butter
1½ tbsp breakfast marmalade
100g currants
50g sultanas
60g light brown sugar
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp mixed spice
1 ball of stem ginger, finely chopped
pinch of salt

For the Frangipane
Adapted from Richard Bertinet’s Almond Cream
125g unsalted butter, at room temperature
125g caster sugar
125g ground almonds
25g plain flour
1 egg and 1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract
20g flaked almonds to decorate

1 x 18cm round loose-bottomed tart tin

  1. To begin with make your pastry. Take the butter out of the fridge and slice very finely with a sharp knife, then place in a large mixing bowl with the flour.
  2. Tear the butter up and coat thoroughly with the flour, then begin to rub gently between your fingertips until you reach very rough breadcrumbs, don’t take it too fine. It should take less than 5 minutes.
  3. Add the sugar, salt, egg and egg yolk then bring together into a dough. Tip it out onto the work surface and press together to form a ball. Wrap in baking parchment and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile make the eccles mixture. Melt the butter together with the marmalade in a small saucepan. Remove from the heat then add the rest of the ingredients, stir together and set aside to cool.
  5. Then make your frangipane by creaming the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy.
  6. Add the ground almonds and mix together until fully incorporated.
  7. Add the flour and egg and egg yolk and vanilla and carry on mixing until smooth. Place the frangipane in a bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
  8. Once the frangipane is in the fridge you can roll out your pastry. Roll until it is about 3mm thick and line the pastry into your tart tin. Leave the edges untrimmed then place the pastry tart tin in the fridge for 15 minutes to rest. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
  9. Once ready you can assemble your tart. Spread the eccles mixture onto the bottom of the tart in an even layer. Then spoon the frangipane on top to cover completely, smoothing it down on top. Finally scatter the flaked almonds on the top.
  10. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes then cover the tart with foil to stop from browning any further and bake for another 20 minutes. Leave in the tin to cool for about half an hour, then trim the pastry around the edges and remove from the tart tin.
  11. Serve at room temperature at 4pm with a lovely cup of tea.

Eccleswell Tart  |  Stroud Green Larder