I would like to make a cherry loaf cake, such as Nieglla's Cherry Almond Loaf cake. However 99% of the recipes I have found contain ground almonds and as my grandson has a nut allergy I cannot add the almonds. What should I replace the ground almonds with - if anything?
Nigella's Cherry Almond Loaf Cake (from Domestic Goddess and on the Nigella website) does contain ground almonds as the addition of the nuts makes the cake very moist and allows it to keep well. Unfortunately we would not recommend substituting the nuts with anything else as this will change to texture of the cake.
However you could try making a madiera cake and adding glace cherries to the cake batter. Madeira cake is slightly denser than a regular sponge cake and so will be closer to a cherry almond loaf cake. We would suggest that you consider Nigella's My Mother-In-Law's Madeira Cake recipe (from Domestic Goddess and on the Nigella website) as a starting point. You may like to replace the lemon zest and juice with 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of milk, or you can leave the lemon as it is as the flavour of lemon is not too strong in the cake.
Use 200g of glace cherries and halve, wash and dust them with flour, as for the loaf cake recipe. Cherries have a slight tendancy to sink so you may want to hold a few back from the cake batter and sprinkle them on the top of the cake batter just before baking.