Chocolate Orange Zebra Cake (eggless)

Hi everyone!

Sorry it has been such a while since my last post, I’ve been getting all doctor-ified! Yes, you read right – I have finally graduated from my PhD! Woohoo! You can call me Dr Cake now. ๐Ÿ˜‰

As tribute to my baking keeping me (mostly) sane throughout my PhD, here’s a photo of me in my regalia holding a very tasty chocolate orange cake, the recipe for which I’m about to share with you!

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While I haven’t posted much on the blog lately, I can assure you that I have been baking. I just don’t feel quite the same compulsion to write about it now that my stress levels have dropped approximately 2000-fold. Also I have a new job which is about 90% writing, so I’m less interested in writing in my spare time now. Here’s some of the stuff I’ve made lately. I might get around to posting the recipes, let me know if you’re interested!

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Recent bakes (clockwise from top left): Sachertorte, afghan biscuits, gluten-free pumpkin cake, peanut butter cheesecake-filled chocolate muffins and home-made jaffa cakes!

One of my most successful bakes of late was an amazing, eggless, chocolate orange zebra cake! It has stripes! Although I think given the colour/flavour combination, perhaps it should be a tiger cake… what do you think?

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It’s actually surprisingly easy… you just make two batters and then ladle spoonfuls of each into a tin, forming concentric circles. Very effective, and a great surprise when you present it to guests! Last time I made it, I doubled the recipe and took one cake to an election night party, and the other to a baby shower. The colour combo was perfectly non-partisan and totally gender neutral. I thought that was pretty cunning. They didn’t give me a doctorate for nothing, you know! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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You can find the original recipe I adaptedย here, and nice pictures showing how to make the stripes here. The bigger spoonfuls you use (more batter), the thicker stripes you get. It looks pretty neat without icing (especially if you have a steadier hand than I do), but the tangy chocolate orange ganache (made with yoghurt instead of cream! You can pretend it’s healthy!) has a really good flavour to it that I highly recommend. I adapted it from my new cookbook Homemade Memories, by Kate Doran. I decorated my cakes with candied orange slices (recipe here) because I was taking them to parties and I wanted it to be obvious what flavour the cake was, but that’s totally optional.

 

Chocolate Orange Zebra Cake (eggless)

Ingredients

Orange batter

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup orange juice (2 – 3 oranges)
  • zest of one orange
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons neutral oil (e.g. canola oil)

Chocolate batter

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 3 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons neutral oil (e.g. canola oil)

Tangy chocolate orange ganache

  • 100 grams dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1/4 cup natural yoghurt

Instructions

For the cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 170ยบC fan bake.
  2. Grease and flour a 20cm round cake tin.
  3. Get out four bowls. In the first bowl,ย  prepare the dry ingredients for the orange batter: sift the flour and baking powder, then add the sugar and salt and mix to combine.
  4. In the second bowl, prepare the dry ingredients for the chocolate batter: sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa, then add the sugar and salt and mix to combine.
  5. In the third bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients for the orange batter.
  6. In the fourth bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients for the chocolate batter.
  7. Combine the wet and dry ingredients for each batter, and fold until just mixed.
  8. Working quickly (but carefully!), spoon a ladleful of the chocolate batter into the centre of the prepared cake tin. Next, spoon a ladleful of the orange batter in the centre of the chocolate batter. Continue until you’ve used all the batter. You don’t need to spread the batter out. As you keep adding spoonfuls, the layers will spread out in concentric circles by themselves. Don’t worry if the edges run over a bit, and you don’t have perfect concentric circles, they’ll still look good inside!
  9. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  10. Cool for about 10 minutes in the tin before transferring to a wire rack to cool. It’s easiest to ice the cake while it’s still a little bit warm (not hot though!), as the yoghurt ganache sets very quickly, and a slightly warm cake will help you get a smoother finish.

For the ganache:

  1. Melt the chocolate and golden syrup in a heat-proof bowl set over a simmering pan of water. When melted, remove from the heat, stir in the orange zest and allow to cool for 6 – 8 minutes.
  2. Fold in the yoghurt until just combined. Work quickly and don’t over fold, as the mixture will stiffen.
  3. Tip the ganache onto the mostly cooled cake, and use a palette knife to smooth out.

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