Thursday, January 28, 2016

New Recipe #16: Marble Cake

My mom loves marble cake, so I decided to make one from scratch for her October birthday. I made this yellow and chocolate cake combination following a single recipe a couple of times that month, but, unfortunately, didn't like how either turned out. Each time, it ended up more like a yellow cake with a fudge swirl than a marble cake. All of the chocolate part was not completely cakelike. Following research, I even tweaked the chocolate part of the recipe the second time around. Boiling the water and adding more than the recommended two tablespoons so that the cocoa paste was more smooth did, in fact, improve its texture, but only a bit. Nonetheless, I served her the second attempt and she raved about it. I do agree that it was delicious, but it just was not what it was supposed to be. I used chocolate frosting from a can on her birthday cake rather than making the chocolate ganache included in the recipe. The recipe did provide excellent instructions to achieve a good swirled effect however. My marbling looked pretty good for the first two tries! I likely searched for a marble cake recipe and pounced on the one from The Kitchn since I adore their website and cookbook. Even though I was unable to perfect this particular recipe, I still remain a big fan of their easy-to-follow recipes and genius ideas.

A slice of my first try.

A slice of my second try.

I love cake myself. Cake on my birthday is a given. I also enjoyed making this dessert from scratch rather than using a mix real quick. Furthermore, this cooking commitment gave me an excuse to properly equip my kitchen. In order to make this recipe, I purchased a 9 x 5 loaf pan. I have become a loyal customer to this professional line of Wilton baking products available at Target. In fact, the day that I wrote this post, I bought a 12-cup muffin pan by the brand on sale. It's nice to finally possess the proper materials of decent quality at my disposal whenever I feel like baking!

You can find this recipe pinned to my Recipes Tried board.

Marble Cake
Recipe from The Kitchn
Baked in a 9 x 5 loaf pan

1/2 c. unsalted butter at room temperature
More butter for the pan
1 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. flour
More flour for the pan
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2/3 c. buttermilk
1/3 c. cocoa powder
2 tbsp. hot water

1. Preheat the oven at 350 degrees F.
2. Grease the loaf pan using a bit of butter and then flour it.
3. Add butter and sugar to a bowl and beat them until combined using an electric mixer.
4. Add the flour, baking powder and salt to a bowl and whisk to combine. 
5. Add the eggs, one at a time, to the butter and sugar mixture, beating after each addition.
6. Add the vanilla to this butter, sugar and egg mixture.
7. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat until incorporated. Next, add 1/2 of the buttermilk and beat. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat. Then, add the last 1/2 of the buttermilk and beat. Finally, add the last 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat.
8. Scoop 1/2 of the batter into another bowl. In a small bowl, mix the cocoa and the water until smooth. Add this chocolate mixture to the second bowl. Beat to make chocolate cake batter.
9. Beginning with the yellow cake batter, place four spoonfuls into the pan, creating a checkerboard.
10. Quickly place four spoonfuls of chocolate cake batter into those holes in the pan, creating a more contrasting checkerboard. 
11. Repeat with the second layer, placing a yellow spoonful on top of a chocolate one and vice versa this time.
12. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, swirl the batter to create the marble effect. Dip the end of the spoon into the batter at one end and make three big swirls across the pan in one direction, and then take it out. Dip the end in again and make three big swirls in the opposite direction and then take it out. Insert the end near a corner and move down the length of the pan, next cross the pan at a diagonal, then continue to move down the other length of the pan, and finally lifting it out, doing a "Z." Do not scrape the bottom.
13. Place in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes, rotating the pan 20 minutes in. The cake is done when it is browned and a toothpick comes out clean.
14. Cool for 10 minutes and then invert to unmold and let it cool completely.
15. Place the cake on a serving platter and frost.
16. Slice and admire the marble.

Enjoy! Buon appetito!

I would really love to perfect a marble cake, for both my mom and me! Please let me know if you have any suggestions or recommend another recipe.


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you! I would love to perfect it though. It would be so great for marble cake to be known as one of the recipes that I'm famous for.

  2. Replies
    1. Grazie! Maybe I'll try it again for Mother's Day in May...