Gluten-free blueberry and cashew cake

blueberry-cashew_cakeWhen I saw Kat’s Blueberry-cashew bread, it put me in an immediate baking mood for this berry and nut combo. Judging from the comments I wasn’t the only one who liked this, so I played with the idea of a cake but adapted it to be gluten-free in order to build my collection of such recipes.

Enter this recipe which originally began as a dense walnut torte. Organic rice flour replaces the all-purpose flour and a few berries are added into the mix. To make things easier to follow, I’m adding a couple of images for visual clarification during the process.

blueberry-cashew_bundt

Bites of sweet-tart fruit and buttery cashews. Baked in 2 ramekins and a 4-cup bundt pan, the texture varied accordingly. The smaller cakes yielded a light, moist crumb whereas the bundt, due to the lack of gluten and having greater volume, turned out soft and denser in texture. It occurred to me that it almost felt like eating japanese mochi.

Recipe

blueberry-cashew_cakexMakes one 9-inch cake, or 1 small bundt and a couple of ramekins
1 ½ cups raw, unsalted cashews, chopped into small pieces
3 oz. butter, softened at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
4 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons rice flour
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
powdered sugar for dusting

Beat the butter with both sugars until light and fluffy. Add the yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the cashews, vanilla, rice flour, and salt, mixing thoroughly to combine. At this point the mixture will appear heavy and the idea of folding egg whites into the batter improbable. Beat the egg whites to firm peaks and fold into the batter by thirds. Note the differences in the before and after images below.

batter_after batter_before

Preheat oven to 350°F degrees. Prepare pans using parchment or butter and chickpea flour (or other gluten-free substitute). Fill with no more than 2/3rds of batter, randomly scattering the blueberries in between if using a cake/bundt pan, or tucked on top if using ramekins (they will sink into the middle during baking). Bake for about 40-55 minutes until toothpick comes out clean and tops spring back when lightly touched. Remove cake from oven and cool completely before removing from pans. Dust with powdered sugar and serve with warm chocolate ganache.

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