Banana, Vanilla & Pecan Nut Cake |
We had been looking for a reliable, light, flavoursome cake for ages but couldn’t find one. So we formulated this stunning recipe out of the contents of the store cupboard. It is made with gluten-free flour and ground almonds, but the really special thing is the flavour of banana coupled with vanilla and pecan nuts. It tastes gorgeous fresh out of the oven and the texture is perfect: light and fluffy.
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Total Time: 1 Hour 5 Minutes
Serves 8


For The Cake:
  • 125g of soft unsalted butter, plus more for the tin
  • 125g of soft brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten, at room temperature
  • 75g of plain white gluten-free flour
  • ¾ tsp of baking powder
  • 75 g of ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 2 small ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 60g of pecan nut pieces
For The Icing:
  • 100g of white chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 350g of icing (confectioner’s) sugar
  • 1½ tbsp of unsalted butter
  • ½ tsp of vanilla extract
  • A little lactose-free milk, if needed
To Decorate:
  • 30g of pecan nuts, dry roasted in a pan


  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/gas 5. Butter and line a small loaf tin measuring 20 x 10 cm/8 x 4 in with silicone baking paper or a cake liner.
  2. Beat the butter and brown sugar together until paler and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs a little at a time.
  3. Sift together the flour and baking powder, and fold these into the butter mixture. Fold in the ground almonds, bananas, vanilla and pecan nuts. Spoon into the prepared tin.
  4. Bake the cake for 50 minutes. To see if it is done, insert a skewer into the centre; it should come out clean. Remove from the tin and place on a cooling rack.
  5. For the icing, melt the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water (don’t let the base of the bowl touch the water). Leave to cool slightly. Beat the icing sugar, butter, vanilla and white chocolate together until you have a thick icing. (Add a little milk if you need to loosen the icing.) Spread over the banana cake and decorate with toasted pecan nuts.

Extract credit to Cooking for the Sensitive Gut by Dr Joan Ransley & Dr Nick Read, published by Pavilion Books. Image credit to Joan Ransley.

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