Blackberry, Lemon, Ginger Tea Cake (gluten free)

Last Christmas, my mother and I made an apple cinnamon cake recipe from the Baby Cakes cookbook.  That’s a really outstanding source of  recipes for wheat and dairy free baking, for those of you who need that kind of thing.  I cannot eat gluten, which is a particularly annoying for someone who likes to bake as much as I do.  I stopped eating gluten about three years ago and have really only stopped being infuriated by it since discovering this cookbook (many thanks to my neighbor Mya for giving it to me).

One of the many irritating things about gluten-free baking is that it is even more persnickity (how do you spell that?) than regular baking.   Often an attempt to add a personal touch to a recipe results in something totally inedible.  The apple cinnamon cake recipe seems to be an exception to this rule.  My mother and I have reduced the sugar, changed the spices and extracts, skipped an entire step that results in a swirl, used different fruit and it always seems to be delicious!  We made an excellent cardamom, almond, pear cake in the winter and a fresh blackberry cake this summer.  So to be honest, the recipe here is not exactly what I made last week on Gabriola Island (for those of you who had that cake)…..but I think that this will be even better than that cake because I am replacing cinnamon with ginger and vanilla with lemon.


  • 1 cup garbanzo-fava bean flour
  • 1 cup (maybe less?) sugar or evaporated cane juice
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot starch
  • 2 and 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon (maybe more?) dry ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup mild oil
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon extract
  • about 1 Tablespoon grated fresh lemon peel
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 cup fresh ripe blackberries
  • 1/4 cup blackberry jam
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, lightly grease a loaf tin with oil.
  2. In a medium bowl mix the flour, sugar, potato starch, arrowroot, baking soda, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt and ginger.
  3. Add the oil, applesauce, vanilla and lemon extracts, lemon peel and hot water to the dry ingredients.  Stir batter until smooth.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin.
  5. mix the blackberry jam into the fresh blackberries.  Pour the blackberry mixture into the filled loaf tin and gently swirl the blackberries into the batter with a teaspoon occasionally moving the spoon up and down.
  6. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the cake’s center comes out clean.
  7. Let the cake stand for 20 minutes before inverting the pan, or just eat it slice by slice from the pan.  This cake is great iced with lemon curd!

5 Comments Add yours

  1. We served the cinnamon version of this fresh blackberry cake to 50 people on Gabriola Island and everyone LOVED it. Daddy would have loved it too. You are brilliant, Erin. Thanks for sharing this recipe.


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