Chop almonds coarsely, uneven pieces are fine. Set aside.
Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt.
Rub in the soft butter until the mixture is crumbly.
Stir through sugar and almonds then add the oil and anise oil (or lemon zest, if using)
Divide and spoon into the two prepared pans and press down with your fingertips - just a little but not too much. It is meant to be rough and crumbly not pressed flat and too firmly.
Scatter extra almonds over and press in slightly.
Bake at 160ºC/320ºF for 45 minutes.
First, it is important to note that this "cake" is not a cake in the traditional sense. Instead think of it more as a large cookie and you will not be confused. Don't expect this cake to rise - it should not be much more than 12mm or ½ inch high.
The next most important thing to remember is not to press the mixture down firmly in the baking pan. Just press lightly with your fingertips, allowing the surface to still be rough and crumbly.