chocolate & vanilla marble cake
this is one of those cakes that i always remember seeing lined up on the counters at (jewish) neighbourhood bakeries and which invariably seemed to be found at someone's home, be it on friday nights/saturday or the holidays. the bakery type, however, was always a parve (non dairy) one so that it could be enjoyed with whatever type of meal was served.
this version is dairy. it is a bit lighter than a poundcake in that it doesn't require that much butter and uses lower-in-fat buttermilk. of course, you can use [dairy] sourcream instead, which is often seen in this kind of cake. i will revisit this cake another time with an excellent parve version — just as good as this one but with no dairy ingredients involved.
1/2 c butter, softened
1 c sugar
1 3/4 c cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 c buttermilk or sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
5 tbsp [dutch process] cocoa powder
4 tbsp hot water
before starting, make sure:
- butter is softened
- eggs are at room temperature
- dry ingredients [except cocoa] have been sifted together
- sift cocoa separately to eliminate lumps
preheat oven to 350 F. grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan.
cream butter and sugar. then add eggs one at a time and blend well after each addition.
mix vanilla into the buttermilk and add half of it and blend well again. repeat with the rest of the flour and buttermilk.
remove about 1/3 of the batter to another bowl and keep aside.
in a small bowl or dish, mix the hot water into the cocoa tablespoon by tablespoon to make a thick paste. add this to the 1/3 of batter you separated and mix it well.
add dollops of the vanilla batter alternating with the chocolate to the greased loafpan. you should have 4 short rows of alternating batter or 2 long rows of 4 colours, depending on how you are looking at it.
bake for 50 minutes or until it is no longer wet in the middle.
remove from oven and let cool 15 minutes in the pan. remove to a rack to cool completely.