Smarter Than Pancakes

Friday, January 29, 2010

The Famed Marble Cake

Filed under: Desserts,Red Velvet and White Marble Cake — shaye3 @ 10:18 pm

This was only my second attempt at marbling. I'm still no expert.

Ok, so I made this cake a few times over the holidays, and I’ve gotten a lot of requests for the recipe.  It’s only taken me a month, and I’m just now getting around to blogging it.  (Sorry, but I’ve already admitted to being a blog slacker.)

Not only am I a blog slacker, but this cake actually uses ::gasp:: CAKE MIXES!!  Yup, I said it.  I used mixes.  I swear I never use them normally, but I really liked the look of this cake, and I was too busy/lazy to figure out how to make it from scratch before I hosted Bunco.   Then, it was so good that I made it again for my sister-in-law from Seattle.  Eventually, I hope to figure out how to make it from scratch—but not until my birthday at the earliest.  (I’ve sworn off everything that packs this many calories until then.)

I obviously took the picture during the holidays, and the whole peppermint thing really screams Christmas.  I was thinking about it, though; and you could totally change the extract to almond or maybe even raspberry and change the taste completely.  The peppermint flavor is only in the frosting, so I really think that some almond extract and a few drops of red food coloring in the frosting would scream Valentine’s Day.

White part:
1  (18.25-ounce) package white cake mix

3  egg whites

1 1/3  cups  buttermilk

2  tablespoons  vegetable oil

Red part:
1  (9-ounce) package Jiffy yellow cake mix (or 1 ¾ c. of any other yellow cake mix)

1/2  cup  buttermilk

1  large egg

1 1/2  tablespoons  cocoa

1/2  teaspoon  baking soda

2  tablespoons  liquid red food coloring (That’s almost an entire bottle of McCormick’s Red.)

1  teaspoon  cider vinegar

Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting:

1  (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1  cup  butter, softened

1  (2-pound) package powdered sugar

2  teaspoons  peppermint extract (Or vanilla, or almond, or raspberry, or whatever you want.)

(Just so you know, you’re going to need two bowls so you can make the two different colored batters before you marble them together.  I used my stand mixer to make the white part, because there’s a lot more of the white batter.  I used a small-ish mixing bowl and my hand mixer for the red part, and it worked beautifully.)

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°.
  2. Grease and flour three 9-inch, round cake pans.  (I used the baking spray that is especially for cakes—the kind with flour in it.)
  3. In your large mixing bowl; dump in the white cake mix, egg whites, buttermilk, and veggie oil.  Beat it for at least as long as the package says.  (Longer is even better.)
  4. While that’s whirring away in your stand mixer, take a smaller bowl and dump in the yellow cake mix, buttermilk, egg, cocoa, baking soda, red, and vinegar; then beat that for as long as the yellow cake mix package says.  (Again, longer is always better for cakes.)
  5. Spoon the batters into your three cake pans, alternating the red and white, then swirl them together a little with a knife or a toothpick.
  6. Put them in the oven, but make sure that each pan is at least a couple of inches away from the other pans or the side of the oven.
  7. (While the cakes are baking, wash your stand mixer bowl and beater so they’ll be ready to make the frosting.)
  8. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
  9. Cool in pans on wire racks for about 10 minutes; then remove from pans and cool on wire racks.
  10. While the cakes are cooling, make your frosting by beating the cream cheese and butter together until they’re creamy.  Add the extract; then lower the speed and add the powdered sugar.  (Trust me, if you don’t lower the speed, you’ll have a powdered sugar cloud that is not pretty.)
  11. When the cakes are cool, spread the frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake.  (Know that if your cake is lopsided, you do not have enough frosting to pile a bunch extra in the middle to level it out.  Don’t ask how I know.)
  12. If you made the frosting peppermint, you can garnish with crushed candy canes.  (It doesn’t really need garnish.)
  13. Serve within 2 hours, and keep leftovers refrigerated.

Trust me when I say this cake isn’t as hard as it looks,  is really impressive looking, and absolutely delicious.   Several of my Bunco friends mentioned how dense and moist it is.

If you happen to make it and sub in a different extract in the frosting, do me a favor and leave a comment letting me know how it turns out.   Thanks!


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