Animal prints is something I never really got behind. It was something that I only saw on 75 year old blue-haired ladies that are way cooler than me or on kids who looked like walking cheetahs. Not really the look I go for.
Lately everywhere I look, there’s something with some form of animal print on it and I find myself liking it. Ok, not EVERYTHING but a few pieces here and there. I can probably attest some of this animal print tolerance to my sister, she’s so stylish sometimes that it kills me. ;)
I’m not sure what kind of demographic I reach out there in internet land, animal print lovers or haters, but I’m sure your love or hatred won’t apply to this cake. It’s a zebra striped cake.
I said it. Zebra striped cake. And no matter WHO’s plate it sits on, it will ALWAYS be in style.
This is a simple cake needs no pillowy frostings, no fancy ganaches, and no whippy creams. A light and beautiful dusting of powdered sugar, a plate and a fork… and you’re in business!
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
Yields one 9″ or 8″ round cake
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup milk (whole, 2% or 1%)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons Double Dutched Dark Cocoa
1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9″ x 2″ round baking pan with cooking spray (you can use a 8″ x 2″ for a slightly thicker cake). Line the bottom of the pan with a circle of parchment, and spritz again. Set the pan aside.
2) In the bowl of your mixer, blend the sugar and eggs until lightened, about 2 minutes. On low speed blend in the oil, milk and vanilla until well combined and smooth.
3) In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk to remove any lumps. Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients. Combine on medium speed 1-2 minutes or until the batter is smooth and lump free. Be sure to scrape down the bowl halfway through mixing.
4) Remove 2 cups of the vanilla batter and place it in the measure you used for the liquid ingredients. Sift the cocoa over this batter, and stir well to combine. Be sure to use a sifter to avoid cocoa lumps in the batter.
5) Now for the stripes. Spoon about 3 tablespoons of vanilla batter into the center of the cake pan. Next, spoon 3 tablespoons of the chocolate batter into the center of the vanilla batter. This causes the vanilla batter to spread out. Continue to alternate batters, in bulls-eye fashion until all batter is used. You will now have thin rings of each batter on the outer edges of the pan, thicker rings towards the center.
6) Bake the cake in the center of the preheated oven for 35-45 minutes, or until the cake is lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling. Dust lightly with confectioners sugar or frost if that strikes your fancy.
Playing around: you can keep the cake batter all vanilla, divide it into two different batches and tint one any color you’d like and follow the same process. Heck, I bet it would work with three different colors :)