This Gluten Free Banana Almond cake was surprisingly good! I am fortunate not to have any major dietary restrictions except for my intolerance of milk. For a while I took soya milk and now I favor a light, lactose free milk.
When I was a child there wasn’t much knowledge about intolerance to lactose or any other food products. My parents always insisted on me having milk because it was good for the bones and it helped you to grow. I often felt sick but not enough to raise major concerns. I could tolerate it better in cakes and in sauces as long as the quantity was small enough. It was only as an adult that I discovered my intolerance to milk and it changed my life.
The dietary restrictions of those with Gluten intolerance are much more serious. I can imagine how difficult and how careful they must be to make sure they eat products without the protein gluten. Gluten is mostly found in grains such as wheat, barley and rye. Most flours are therefore not allowed.
Not using flour in a cake was almost inconceivable so when I came across this recipe I thought it would be an interesting challenge. I had my doubts if it was going to taste as good as a “normal” cake but when I had the first bite of this gluten free banana almond cake, I was sold!
It takes rice flour and almond flour which you prepare by grinding the almonds. You can also choose hazelnuts instead, if you prefer. The other advantage is that you can change the fruit as well. Instead of banana you can use apple, pear, apricots…
The final result is a moist cake with a sweet, strong banana taste that is perfectly balanced by the nutty and slightly bitter flavour of the almonds.
It is a Portuguese recipe adapted from Chef Mafalda Pinto Leite.
Gluten Free Banana Almond Cake
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 ripe bananas, cut into thin slices
- 185 g/6.5 oz butter, softened
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups almond flour (grind almonds)
- 1/3 cup rice flour
- Preheat the oven to 160ºC/320ºF. Butter a 22 cm/9 inch round springform pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Take two tbsp of the brown sugar and sprinkle the bottom of the pan. Place the banana slices on top.
- Using a standing mixer beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the almond flour followed by the rice flour. Mix well. Pour the batter into the springform pan.
- Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let it cool for 10 minutes before you remove it from the pan. It should cool completely before serving.
It is really a great recipe and one I will definitely revisit. Next time, I intend to use hazelnuts and apple or pear.