I have a wonderful friend named Donna.
We met at the beginning of the school year, in the 8th grade, and here we are, 33 years later, still close. I remember talking her into being my roommate in our early adult years, by telling her I’d do the cooking, and she gave in. Yay to that! It became a common occurrence for me to walk over from the kitchen to wherever she was in our apartment with my latest concoction on a spoon for her to try. She never asked what it was, and instead always tried it with gusto. It was like my own version of that TV show, The Taste 😉 Looking back, I have one thought: Boy was she brave!
She seemed to like my cooking, and even though I’d love to take all the credit for the amazing ideas I had…just before she moved in, I’d purchased my very first Martha Stewart cookbook.
So, between that, and all I’d learned from my Mom, Grandma, Martha, and my new subscription to Gourmet magazine, Donna wasn’t poisoned, and stayed on as my roomie for a long time.
Fast forward to the present time: Donna’s learned in recent times that she must eat Gluten Free. No fun, you say? Actually, there’s a plethora of amazing foods that just happen to be Gluten Free, and some old favorites that can easily be changed into being perfect for all the Donnas in our life.
This week, I came across a picture of a delicious-looking dessert while browsing Pinterest. It was a Banana-Chocolate cake, and I was shocked when I saw the title named it as a “Gluten Free” dessert! Whoa…really? Then I clicked on it and saw it was a recipe by one of my favorite bloggers, Jennifer Farley. She’s got culinary experience that she readily shares, and I can honestly recommend her blog as one to bookmark.
I read through the ingredient listing, and saw I had all but two, so I went to my local Sprouts market for the remaining items: Sweet Sorghum Flour and Almond Meal. I got excited about making this gluten free recipe, and even more so, about trying a new cake 😉
The batter was quite easy to put together, and the entire time it was baking, the scent of bananas were wafting through my kitchen. Finally it was time to see the finished product. I took it out of the oven and it was absolutely perfect! It was a light golden color, with a tiny bit of a darker tone on the edges. I patiently let it sit about 10 minutes and then cut through to see if it was easy to lift out of the pan. A perfect cut!
I plated it up and I took the first bite, not knowing what to expect. “Oh, WOW this is good”, I said out loud, which looking back, I’m glad nobody heard because my mouth was too full of this lovely chocolatey-banana perfection to be completely understood. I decided that another “little piece” couldn’t hurt. And another. By the time I’d tasted enough, half of the 9″ cake was missing… hmmm now WHO could have eaten THAT???
However, something was very different. You know that feeling you get, after eating a bit too much dessert? That “oh dear what have I done” thought, followed by the “where did that extra bulge in my stomach come from?” That feeling? I never got that! The gluten free dessert only made this tummy happy!
Holy Cow this is delicious. Make it. Now. Really.
The original recipe can be found here, but I’ve changed it up a bit to suit my own tastes, after making it a second time. For example, I changed the oil to refined coconut oil. Why refined? Because it has no flavor and works really well in baking. Plus it’s a really healthy oil choice. You could also used unrefined if you’d like to add a coconutty flavor 🙂
I also changed up the method of the recipe, including pureeing the bananas. Doing so gives it an even consistency. Of course, I doubled the amount of chocolate chips (I know, surprise!). I use Guittard, which tastes like delicious high quality chocolate, as opposed to the typical chocolate chips you see in grocery stores that have a fake, waxy taste. Trust me on this one.
I used to only be able to find them at Williams Sonoma, but now I can get them at my local Ralphs or Vons supermarket!
Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Cake
coconut oil to grease the pan
3 ripe bananas
¾ cup almond meal
½ cup sweet sorghum flour
¼ cup arrowroot starch
¼ cup sugar
1½ teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ cup coconut oil in solid form
½ cup of milk
⅔ cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°
Grease a 9″ glass pie pan using coconut oil and a pastry brush; set aside.
Using a stick blender, pureé the bananas well; set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together almond meal, sorghum flour,
arrowroot, sugar, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
Scoop coconut oil into a small glass measuring cup.
Microwave about 30 seconds till oil just liquifies, but is not hot.
(Double check to make sure you have exactly ¼ cup)
To that, add milk and stir.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Add milk mixture and stir.
Stir in dry ingredient mixture.
Add banana puree and stir well.
Pour in chocolate chips and barely stir, only till incorporated.
(If you stir too much, they’ll end up sinking to the bottom of the cake)
Carefully pour into pie pan.
Bake 42 minutes (checking after 35) till edges are dark golden.
Let cake sit at least 10 minutes before cutting into it.
You’ll notice that it’s very easy to remove from the pan!
So what do you think? Do you have any gluten free people you’d like to make this for? I’d love to hear your feedback on this one, and also, if you’d like more special dietary recipes, let me know. I’m here to help!
Have a great week!