Chocolate Vanilla Marble cake

I thought about it for a long time. So much that I had not decided what to make until the afternoon of the day I was supposed to make this cake. Yes, I think I am testing my own decision making skills.  But that rule applies solely to me. It was my own birthday cake after all. I had given strict instructions that I do not want a bought cake. Yes, I like cakes from a certain bakery, but here I had a valid excuse to make some kind of an over the top, iced cake.

As each year goes, I think that our likes and dislikes change, and they change just one fine day. Take my tryst with cinnamon, for example. I never really did like it. But one day with the smell of baking cinnamon something, I was suddenly, inexplicably craving cinnamon. Maybe it has something to do with getting older. I don't really want to get all philosophical, so I think it's best I leave it at that.

So did I make an over the top cake? No. But I certainly experimented some. I made ganache for the first time. I made marble cake for the second time. I spread the frosting, chilled the cake. I cut it like a pie.

I was in two minds weather to ice the cake or not. Being a Birthday cake, it demanded at least some icing (really, Birthday cake means icing, no further doubt) but then I wondered if I should really go into all that much effort just to ice my own birthday cake? I settled on an icing, but then realised I didn’t have enough butter. So I settled for Ganache. What is Ganache? Ganache is a chocolate+cream combination used for filling or icing cakes and tarts. Ganache is made by boiling cream and butter, and melting chocolate into it.

Good thing I added the ganache. Now, me being me (and I am going to repeat that  a few times more), missed adding the milk to the cake, which I realised after I had cleaned off two slices (two, maybe three) of the cake. It did occur to me when I mixed the chocolate batter which was simply too dry to be a cake batter, and therefore I did add a tablespoon and a half of milk into the chocolate batter. But as it turns out the white part of the cake could have used some more moisture too. It didn’t mess too much with the final product, but missing the milk did make the cake a tad try.

A word about the ganache I made here. I should probably not be using the term ‘ganache’. I have not made a true version as mine lacks the butter. But don’t worry; if you decide to make it, it didn’t change anything taste wise as a frosting for the cake.

Chcolate Vanilla Marble Cake
Adapted from Rachel Allen Bake!

You will need-

For the cake:

110 g butter, at room temperature
100 g powdered sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
110 g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp milk
25 g cocoa powder, sifted

For the Ganache:
1 cup cream
1 cup chopped dark chocolate
20 cm round cake pan

To make the cake:
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Line the cake pan with butter paper.

2. Sift the flour and baking powder together and set aside.

3. In a bowl, cream the butter in with an electric hand mixer or using a wooden spoon till it’s soft. Then add the sugar and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.

4. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla extract together using a fork or a balloon whisk. Add the eggs to the butter mixture slowly, beating continuously.

5. Fold in the dry ingredients into this mixture gently and mix.

6. Add the milk to this mixture and gently combine till it comes together.

7. In another clean bowl, take out half the white cake batter and add the cocoa powder (sift it before using to get rid of lumps) to it. Fold it in gently.

8. In the cake tin, place spoonfuls of the two batters alternately so that together they fill up the cake tin. If you wish you can run a toothpick through this mix in the pan for added marble effect. Another way to do this is to first add the white batter to the base and then add the chocolate mixture on top. Run a long skewer or knife through it for the marble effect. Be careful not to over mix here.

9. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Once ready, take the cake out of the pan and let it cool.

10. To make the ganache, chop up the dark chocolate and set aside. In a deep bottomed pan, boil the cream.

11. Turn of the heat and add the chocolate to the cream. Stir this gently until the chocolate melts completely and you get a uniform chocolate mixture with the consistency of thick sauce. While mixing the chocolate and the cream together at first, it looked like the ganache was not going to come together, but as I stirred the heat melted the chocolate completely and I had a smooth satiny sauce like ganache (which sets when cooled). Pour this over your cooled cake. Spread it using a knife so that the mixture covers the entire surface and the sides. (If it leaks down on the side, don’t clean it, it’s nice to later spoon the ganache off – Oh, wait there’s cake too?)


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