Marble cake, how I love thee. The Neapolitan of the cake world. Why have one flavour when you can chuck all of them in. Even better, add some booze too.
I’ve added both the original Baileys and the ever so wonderfully tacky strawberries and cream version. Feel free to omit both and stick to the original vanilla, chocolate and strawberry version if you prefer.
I’ve also tarted it up with some seasonally flavoured M&M’s which really is just a bit too much, but I couldn’t resist the tack. If you want something a bit classier, stick with the plain strawberry icing instead.
125 grams of unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup of caster sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
2 cups of self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon of salt
3/4 cup of milk
2 tablespoons of light sour cream
2 tablespoons of dark cocoa powder
2 tablespoons of boiling water (from a just boiled kettle)
2 teaspoons of strawberry essence/flavouring
1 tablespoon of Original Baileys (optional)
1 tablespoon of Strawberries and Cream Baileys (optional)
red/pink food colouring
125 grams of softened unsalted butter
1 tablespoon of light sour cream
2 cups of icing sugar
1 teaspoon of Strawberries and Cream Baileys (optional)
1 teaspoon of strawberry essence/flavouring
red/pink food colouring
Line a 20cm round baking tin and preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. In a small bowl, combine the cocoa powder and hot water together to make a paste. Set this aside to cool and get on with your cake batter.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the sugar, vanilla and butter until light in colour.
Next, crack in the two eggs and beat again until light and fluffy. If the mixture looks a little split you can always add a tablespoon of the flour to bring it back together but it won’t matter in the end if you don’t.
Next, in batches of two, sift in the flour and salt, alternating with the milk and sour cream.
Slowly beat your cake batter until everything is combined, but be careful to not over mix.
Evenly divide your cake mixture into three bowls. I do this by using levelled scoops with my ice-cream scoop but you can always weigh and divide your mixture but honestly, this is just a simple home-spun cake and if we start doing those sorts of shenanigans we’re really losing the plot over here.
Into one mixture, combine the Original Baileys.
In the next, combine the Strawberries and Cream, along with some strawberry essence and some food colouring.
In regards to the food colouring you can go as loud or muted as you choose. I think I went somewhere in between but my scale for such judgment might be terribly off.
In the final bowl, combine the cooled chocolate paste mixture and stir well.
Now that you have these three wonderful Neapolitan dreams (name that band) we can start the marbling fun.
Try to do even spoonfuls as you go and alternate between colours. Don’t just do all chocolate and all vanilla etc. all at once.
Once you’ve finished using up all your mixture, take a butter knife and gently swirl through the cake.
The trick here is to not go overboard. You want solid colours of each flavour to be seen and not all mushed together into one indiscernible shade. You want a satisfying paisley pattern in cake form.
Bake for 50-55 minutes (checking as you go) and turn it out to cool.
Admire your work. Now crack on with the icing.
In another large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and sour cream until well combined with no lumps. Ensuring both these ingredients are room-temp and softened beforehand. This is important and will ensure a smooth icing.
Next, sift in your icing sugar, again insuring no lumps please.
Into this snow-capped mound, dribble in your essence and Baileys.
Whip until you have an understated pink, fluffy cloud.
Now trash it up. Add as much or as little food colouring until you’ve reach your desired pink tone. Same goes for the essence here, you can have subtle or punch in your face strawberry, depending on your mood or level of class.
Now all thats left to do, is to ice your now cooled cake.
This very classy version looks a treat and I’d be more that happy to keep it this way but I saw those M&M’s guys. I saw them. They saw me.
Gussy her up nice and good.
Silliness aside, this cake really is delicious. Tender-crumbed and fluffy.
You could always go for a chocolate or vanilla icing here too, but honestly, who could resist these pink hues?
Have a happy and safe Saint Patrick’s Day if you celebrate it. Or simply have a happy and safe weekend, tucked away with this cake.
What Saint Patricks day treats or traditions will you be doing this weekend? Let me know in the comments. I love a snoop.