Gluten Free and Dairy Free Lemon Cherry Cake
This is one of my favourite desserts. I love cherries and anything that has some of that lovely lemony sourness. The cake is made with olive oil, eggs and ground almonds, so you could argue it’s more heart healthy than the average cake. Maybe. Sure who cares? It tastes great.
This lemon cherry cake is one of my favourite abitmoreveg recipes and one of my favourite sweet treats/desserts. I have made it countless times at this stage. I came up with the recipe before going gluten-free. I was trying to get myself to do a detox but wasn’t quite managing to start it so I was giving up things bit by bit. Anyway I’m delighted I came up with this. It’s a keeper.
It might be stretch to say this is a healthy treat as it does contain a whopping 175g of caster sugar but it is full of good fat from the olive oil and ground almonds, and it is delicious. Also it is always handy to have delicious gluten free dessert recipe to hand.
And isn’t it nice to start the new year (or end the week) on a sweet note.
So ground almonds or almond flour as people following a “Paleo” diet seem to call it, is a protein and nutrient dense flour. Searching online you see some people are very much in favour of it while others seem to think it’s very over-rated. All I know is that I have often used it as a replacement for flour when I’m doing a long (i.e. at least 2 months) detox and I’ve felt much better using it. You can find more information on the health benefits of almonds here.
Now recipes which use olive oil as a replacement for butter will advise you to use olive oil that isn’t the extra virgin olive oil kind which normally tastes so strong that it can overpower the sweet taste of the cake. OK, this is true if you are using an extra virgin olive oil bought from a deli or one that has a really strong taste, but being honest about it these oils vary greatly in just how “olivey” they truly are, and if you are buying extra virgin olive oil from your local supermarket and it has a very mild taste you can get away with using this. How healthy is the oil if it’s this mild? I don’t know really but personally, unless it’s fantastic quality, I much prefer the more neutral tasting oils.
I’ve since found out that the reason they say to use regular olive oil is because it is less viscous (thick) than regular olive oil – and yes regular olive oil does work better here. But in a pinch you’ll get away with using the extra virgin type. The cake will just have more of a custard-like texture.
Cherries are also full of goodness. I leave them un-pitted in the cake because I think they hold their flavour better this way but it can also be made with pitted cherries. Also, let’s face it, it’s much faster this way.