Cooking for the Sensitive Gut

Dark aubergine cake with with white chocolate and summer fruits

This dark and delicious cake has the added mystery of containing a vegetable. If you ask people to guess which one, few get it right.

We are familiar with cakes containing carrots and maybe even courgettes but this one contains a cooked aubergine which gives it a silky smooth texture.The whole cake is very chocolately and  I think resembles a brownie.

So often if you have a food intolerance cakes can be daunting to make. This one is very easy to make and gluten free. A slice is low in the fermentable carbohydrates known as FODMAPs which can trigger symptoms in a sensitive gut.

One of my favourite cake recipe books is by Hannah Miles and I have adapted her white chocolate icing  to drizzle over my cakes. It is luxurious and very easy to make and a little goes a very long way if you stick to drizzling rather than spreading over the cake. White chocolate icing flavoured with vanilla also tastes great on a banana cake (recipe in our book Cooking for the Sensitive Gut).

For a winter version of this cake you can add a few fresh cranberries to the cake mix and decorate with a few cranberries cooked in sugar.

If you are lactose intolerant, most people do not have to completely avoid ingredients containing lactose such as the white chocolate – just limit your intake. Fifteen grams of white chocolate is low in FODMAPs . Or you could leave some of the cake plain for those that do not want to eat the white chocolate icing.

The cake is rich and so I cut it up into bite sized squares about 2cm along each side. This is a really popular cake in the cookery demonstrations I have done for the Allergy and Free From shows and the Ilkley Literature Festival.

Cakes from the book

Dark aubergine cake with with white chocolate and summer fruits

Makes 15 slices 


  • 1 large aubergine (weighing roughly 400g)
  • 300 g/10 oz dark chocolate, (60% minimum cocoa solids), broken into squares
  • 50 g/ 2 oz cocoa powder
  • 50 g/2 oz ground almonds
  • 3 medium free range eggs
  • 1 tsp orange extract
  • zest 1 orange
  • 100 g/7 oz golden syrup
  • 100 g/ 7oz maple syrup
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tbsp brandy
  • 100 g/ 4 oz fresh or frozen raspberries and a few blueberries
  • edible flowers to garnish such as borage, lavender or rose petals

For the icing

  • 350 g/12 oz icing sugar
  • 20 g/ ¾ oz butter
  • 100 g/3 ½ oz white chocolate, melted and cooled a little
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 350°C/gas 4. To make one cake you will need a square loose bottomed cake tin measuring 23 cm/ 9 in across and 7 cm/3 in deep

Line the cake tin with non stick baking parchment and brush lightly with oil.

Puncture the aubergine all over with a skewer, place in a bowl, cover with Clingfilm and cook in a microwave on high for 5 minutes until soft. Throw away any liquid that has accumulated and leave the aubergine to cool a little.

Skin the aubergine and puree with a stick blender or liquidiser. Add the broken up chocolate which will melt in the warmth of the aubergine.

Place the remaining ingredients apart from the raspberries and caster sugar in a large bowl and mix together thoroughly. Stir in the aubergine and melted chocolate and half the cranberries.

Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for 40 minutes until firm to touch.

Remove the cake (s) from the oven and cool for 15 minutes before turning out onto a cooling tray.

For the icing: beat the icing sugar, butter, vanilla essence and melted white chocolate until you have a thick icing. Add a little milk if you need to loosen the icing.

Spread the icing over the cake and cut into 2cm squares. Decorate each with a raspberry or blueberry and the odd edible flower.

Have you bought a copy of our book Cooking for the Sensitive Gut (Pavilion 2016) available here on Amazon

Cover for the book from Pavilion


If you would like more information about managing your IBS head over to The IBS Network

Screen Shot 2016-04-30 at 19.17.36

This entry was written by Joan Ransley and published on August 31, 2016 at 6:25 am. It’s filed under Basic methods, Cake, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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