Recipe of the Week: Zebra Cake (Azerbaijan) Week 2
The Global Bakery represents the diversity of the world’s cakes for the first time in one thoroughly researched volume. The amateur baker is taken on a journey across the continents, with all tastes and occasions catered for. The recipes have been fully tested in a domestic kitchen and feature sumptuous photographs. The book also includes a number of vegan, wheat & gluten free recipes.
Preparation: 25 minutes / Bake: 40 minutes
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups / 250g granulated sugar
1 cup / 240ml milk, at room temperature
1 cup / 240ml oil (corn, vegetable or canola are fine)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/3 cups / 300g all-purpose/plain flour
3 tsp baking powder or 1 tsp baking soda
2 tbsp dark cocoa powder
Heat oven to 355°F/180°C/Gas 4.
Grease and flour a 9-inch/23-cm round cake pan with oil.
Line with parchment paper and oil again.
You will need a large serving spoon or ladle.
1 In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar until the mixture is pale and creamy.
2 Add the milk, oil and vanilla extract and continue beating until well blended. Set aside.
3 In a separate bowl, combine the flour and baking powder. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, beating after each addition until the batter is smooth but taking care not to overbeat in order to prevent air pockets from forming in the mixture.
4 Divide the mixture into two equal portions. Leaving one portion plain, sieve the cocoa powder into the other portion and mix until it is thoroughly combined and not streaky.
5 Using the large spoon or ladle, scoop a spoonful of plain batter into the middle of the pan. Then place an equal-sized scoop of the cocoa batter in the middle of the plain batter. Continue to alternate between the different colors in this way, always placing each portion in the middle of the pan. Do not wait for the batter to spread between each addition, do not attempt to spread the batter yourself or tilt the tin. The mixture will spread by itself and will fill the pan gradually. Continue adding alternate and equal measures of the mixtures until both batters are used up.
6 The top can be ‘feathered’ at this stage. Lightly drag a skewer through the surface of the mixture from the middle of the cake to the edge. Each time, lift the skewer out of the mixture and go back to the middle of the cake, dragging in one direction only and being careful to pull the skewer lightly along the surface. Do this five or six times evenly around the cake.
7 Carefully place the cake in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Do not open the oven door for at least 25 minutes as this cake is prone to collapsing. Don’t be too concerned if cracks appear on the top of the cake as it bakes, since the cracks close as the cake cools. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
8 Remove from the oven. Immediately run a knife around the inside of the pan to loosen the cake, then invert the cake onto a cooling rack.
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