Vinegar drizzle cake

Yes, a vinegar cake – don't knock it til you've tried it

Artisan Honey Vinegar, made from nothing but raw, unfiltered wildflower honey, has a heady, floral quality. In this decadently moist cake recipe (which is even gluten-free), the vinegar marries perfectly with festively aromatic citrus, cloves, and vanilla. Give it a try — I promise you won’t miss the lemon juice.

This unusual and delicious, cheerily yellow cake goes very well with a reviving cup of Earl Grey on a slow afternoon. Or serve slices of it with strong coffee at the end of a dinner party over the coming months. Bonus guessing game for the guests: what's the secret ingredient?


  • 200 g butter, softened
  • 200 g demerara sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 200 g ground almonds
  • 100 g polenta
  • 2 oranges
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • pinch of salt


Preheat the oven to 160 C. Grease and flour a 9" springform tin (using ground almonds instead of flour if you want to keep things gluten-free).

Zest the oranges and chop the zest finely. (You won't need the actual oranges for this recipe, so save them for a morning juice or other treat.) With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar for a few minutes until light and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one by one, then stir in the vanilla.

Whisk together the ground almonds, polenta, orange zest, and baking powder in a separate bowl, then fold them into the butter mixture until fully combined.

Spatula the batter into the tin. Bake for 45 mins until golden brown on top.

While the cake is baking, make the drizzling syrup (see below).

Once out of the oven, let the cake cool a little bit, then poke all over with a toothpick to make holes of different depths. Pour over the syrup.

Drizzling syrup

  • 10 cloves
  • 90 ml Artisan Honey Vinegar
  • 100 g caster sugar

Lightly crush the cloves. Add all the ingredients to a small saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes until the liquid is slightly thickened.

Pour onto the cake through a strainer.

— Beatrix Swanson

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