Are your recipes a work in progress? Mine are. I’ve been playing with this recipe for quite some time…adding this or that, taking something away, looking for just the right balance between flavor and texture. Without a doubt, this version is my favorite. I love the moistness of the cake and the crunchiness of the walnuts. The freshly ground nutmeg and the cinnamon balance each other and are so fragrant.
The orange, though, accented by the chocolate frosting, take this cake from ordinary to something special. I made a two layer cake and put a layer of toasted, ground walnuts in the middle. The added surprise is a little bite of heaven.
***Please note: This frosting uses date sugar made from dehydrated dates. Dates are naturally gluten-free however the product was processed in a facility that is not gluten-free certified. I cannot eat wheat or refined white sugar but I do not have the same cross-contamination issues that those with Celiac Disease do. Generally, if there is no gluten or refined sugar in the ingredient list I can eat it without any problem.
- 1/2 cup agave nectar
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 ¼ cup mashed banana
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons fresh squeezed orange juice
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 2 ¼ cup All-Purpose Gluten Free Flour Mix
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1/3 cup crushed pineapple, drained
- ¾ cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
- Prepare the baking pan of your choice with unflavored cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Cream agave and oil until light.
- Add banana and beat until mixed well. Add eggs, vanilla, orange juice, and zest. Mix until combined.
- Sift gluten-free flour blend, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix into batter on a medium-low speed until smooth. Do not over mix.
- Stir in crushed pineapple and walnuts.
- If using (2) 8” round pans, divide batter evenly by using measuring cups.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- 1 cup date sugar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate
- 1 teaspoon instant coffee
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- Put date sugar in a medium sized glass bowl. Bring water to a boil and pour over date sugar. Stir until mixed and let sit for an hour. It’s okay to let it sit longer – this softens the date sugar.
- Put date sugar and water into a medium, heavy bottomed sauce pan. Add chocolate, instant coffee, and canola oil. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Let mixture boil for 5 minutes, making sure that chocolate has melted completely.
- Remove from heat and put into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for several minutes, until mixture is smooth. Store in refrigerator overnight before using. Mix with a hand mixer on high speed before using.