Chocolate Marble Cake

Sunday 15 March 2015

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I am somewhat ashamed to say that there were not a lot of homemade . . .  made from scratch . . .  cakes that didn't come from a mix in my life prior to coming over here to the UK.   I did some psuedo homemade cakes . . .  you know the kind I mean.  You use a cake mix and a few other ingredients to make a type of cake . . .  but there's not really any science or skill involved in that is there.  I did make my mom's hot milk cake from time to time and the odd gumdrop cake, and maybe a fruit cake now and again, but mostly . . .  my cakes came from a mix.  They were quick, easy, convenient and didn't taste all that bad.

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That all changed when I moved over here to the UK however.    Cake mixes were not really done over here when I arrived, although admittedly they are being seen with a bit more frequency these days, which is a shame really . . .  because nothing on earth can compare the experience of baking your own cakes from scratch.   I bake ALL of my cakes from scratch now.  There are no mixes in my house and I'm happy to say I would never settle for a mix now except in a real pinch.  Not when you can have a delicious Victoria Sponge on the table in less than half an hour.  Well, a seven inch one at any rate!

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Today I baked my first ever Chocolate Marble Cake that didn't come from a mix!  Yay me!  And it was so simple and quick to make also.  I got the recipe from this lovely book I have had a while, Vintage Cakes by Jane Brocket.   It's a fab book filled with good solid recipes for the types of cakes you might have imagined reading about as a child . . .  the midnight feast cakes drooled over in Enid Blyton novels.

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This marble cake is absolutely gorgeous.  It's light and buttery with just the right mix of chocolate and vanilla cake batters.   It was very simple to make . . .  as simple as making one batter, flavouring half of it with chocolate and then alternating spoonfuls into a cake tin.

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It's a basic one bowl sponge that goes together lickety split.  Everything is just bunged into a bowl and beaten together.  It bakes up light and beautiful.   It's also very, VERY moreish.  In short . . . we loved it.  Each slice is different.  I like that.  It's like a box of chocolates . . .  you never know what you're going to get . . .  mostly chocolate cake, or mostly vanilla cake, or a happy mix of both. ☺

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*Chocolate Marble Cake*
Makes one medium cake
serving 8 to 10

With delicious moist swirls of vanilla and dark chocolate sponge, this cake can be the highlight of an afternoon tea.  You can of course bake it ain any large cake tin, however I love the look that a Bundt tin gives to this beautiful cake.

250g of butter, softened (1 cup)
250g of caster sugar (1 1/3 cups)
250g of plain flour (1 3/4 cups)
2 tsp baking powder
4 large free range eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 TBS milk 

For the chocolate batter you will also need:
2 TBS cocoa powder, whisked together with 2 tsp warm milk
Icing sugar to dust.  

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Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Butter a non stick bundt pan really well or spray with cake release spray.

Put the butter, sugar, flour, baking powder, eggs and vanilla into a large mixing bowl.   Mix well together with an electric whisk or a wooden spoon.  When well mixed, fold in the 2 TBS of milk. You should have a smooth batter with a good dropping consistency.  Remove half of the batter to another bowl.  Stir the chocolate mixture into this, mixing it in well.

Drop the  batter by dessert spoonfuls into the prepared cake tin, alternating batters.  I like to go around twice, alternating the batters.  You want it to look somewhat haphazard and unpredictable. 
Bake in the heated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean and the top springs back when lightly touched.   Allow to cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before tipping out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.  Dust with icing sugar.  Cut into slices to serve.  Store any leftovers in an airtight container.


  1. Enjoyed this post, Marie. My mother made sponge cake for holidays and no mixes were ever used for these big, beautiful cakes.

  2. Thanks Carol! My mom worked so there weren't a lot of homemade cakes or cookies in the house. Plus she had been obese as a child, and my father was always battling his weight problem, so we were not allowed to have much in the way of empty caloriesin our house. You were a lucky girl! xxoo

  3. That's a delicious looking cake with a beautiful crumb. My mother never-ever used a cake mix when we were growing up and the ultimate insult about any cake would be my father saying: that's as bad as a birthday cake made from a mix. Because of that I do not use box mixes either, except on rare occasions and then you doctor them up with add-ins. I prefer the texture of a scratch made cake and recently have been experimenting with polenta and corn meal in the batter. I like the courser texture!!! I'll never win any prizes for my cakes, but there are a lot of smiling faces when they eat it.

  4. And it's so pretty!

    Oh Marie..w/ littleone I used cake mixes too for some recipes..adding puddings etc;)
    This look just perfect .How pretty are Bundts?

  5. It's like the difference between store white bread and homemade white bread Sharon! We figured out when I was growing up that you could squash a slice of store bought white bread down into about a marble size. Try doing that with a slice of homemade bread! I know what I would rather eat! xoxo

    Thanks Monique. A Bundt pan makes any cake prettier! xoxo

  6. LOL, Marie. My mom made all our bread too. No store bought stuff in our house!!!!!

  7. What a lucky girl you were Sharon. We only ever got home baked stuff at the holidays or if we baked it ourselves! My mom hated anyone in her kitchen. She was pedantic about mess as well. Searing anything meant trouble because God forbid anything spatter the top of the stove! Not fun! xoxo

  8. Do you think I could bake this in round pans to make a 2 layer cake?

  9. I am sure you could do it in two 8 inch layer cake pans Mrs. B. Just check it at 20 minutes to see if it is done. It is a cake which bakes really quickly even in the bundt tin.

  10. I would like to make this as a 2 layer cake. Do you think there is enough batter for 2 9inch round layers?

  11. I would recommend 8inch layers Mes B. You could do 9 but they might be a lot thinner. Let me know how you get on.

  12. My son requested a marble cake for his birthday just about the time you posted this recipe. I made this in 2 8inch layers as you suggested and it turned out great. I frosted it with chocolate butter cream. We all thoroughly enjoyed it!
    (Sorry I posted my question twice. The first one didn't show up right away and I was impatient)
    I am so glad I found your blog. I love reading your posts and I haven't been disappointed with any of the recipes I've tried.
    Thank You!

  13. No worries Mrs B! Thank you so much for taking the time to come back and let us know how much you enjoyed the cake! Also many thanks for your lovely comments re the blog and my recipes! You made my day. xoxo


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