Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bundt Cake # 10 of Bundt Cake Season 3: Orange/Chocolate Marble Cake

My fourth entry for BCS3 was, sadly, a bit of a disappointment. I was very excited for my first marble bundt, but alas and alack, it was not all I'd hoped for. The marble turned out fine (if somewhat simple, since the recipe did not instruct me to do the swirly knife thing--I'm definitely doing that next time), which was great. But there were a couple of disappointing aspects to the cake. I think there were a couple of reasons for this, which lead me to believe that a second attempt at some time in the future will lead to greater success. See, the main problem was that the cake was a little dense and dry--and not as flavourful as I would like.

I think part of the too-dense issue had to do with the state of the butter. Unfortunately, although I had taken the butter out to soften, I hadn't really taken into consideration the fact that our kitchen tends to be cold, therefore room temperature there is not really what is meant by "room temperature" when dealing with butter. So, when I beat the butter for the cake, I don't think it got light and fluffy enough, which in turn, lead to a denser cake.

The other issue was the chocolate flavor in the chocolate part of the marble. It wasn't really chocolate-y enough. (And after that delicious Chocolate Stout Bundt Cake, I had high standards.) At the time, I only had Hershey's cocoa, which is not as awesome as the fancy Dutch processed cocoa I now own (thanks to my friend, Katie). This less-than-fabulous cocoa, was also an issue when I made the chocolate glaze for the cake.

So, the moral of this story is: I think it would probably be tasty with properly softened butter and good quality cocoa.

The recipe is from the Bundt Cookbook.


1 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs separated
2 1/2 cups sifted flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup milk
1/4 tsp grated orange peel***
1/4 orange extract*
1/4 cup cocoa**
1/4 cup water

* Since I didn't have orange extract, I used Grand Marnier instead--so feel free to use the orange liqueur of your choice, if, you too, do not have orange extract.
** As noted above, I recommend springing for the Dutch processed cocoa.
*** I think I may have added more orange peel than this, so that the batter had the level of orange flavor I was looking for.


Cream butter; add sugar gradually, beating until fluffy.
Beat in egg yolks, one at a time, until light and fluffy.
Add sifted flour, baking powder, and salt, a third at a time, alternating with milk, until blended.
Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites.
Spoon half the batter into a second bowl; stir in orange peel and orange extract (or orange liqueur).
Blend cocoa and water in a cup: fold into batter in first bowl.
Spoon batters, alternating layers of chocolate and orange, at least two times into a greased and floured 10 0r 12 cup bundt pan. (This is where you might want to get fancy and swirl the layers together using a knife.)
Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes or until cake tests done.
Cool in pan 10-15 minutes.
Turn out on wire rack or serving plate to complete cooling.
Top with Chocolate or Orange Glaze

As you can see, the directions call for topping with *either* Chocolate or Orange glaze, but I thought that was silly, when you could top it with both glazes and have two delicious flavors! I made a half batch of each, and drizzled the cake with first the orange glaze and then the chocolate glaze (giving the orange glaze a little time to "set" while I made the chocolate one).

Orange Glaze:
(this is a half recipe, since I was using two glazes)
1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1/2 tbsp soft butter
2-4 tbsp orange juice
1-2 tsp grated orange peel

In a small bowl, combine sugar and butter. Add orange juice gradually to achieve desired consistency, and stir until smooth.

Chocolate Glaze:
(again, this is a half recipe, since I was using two glazes)
1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1/2 tbsp soft butter
1/4 tsp vanilla
2-4 tbsp milk
1 tbsp cocoa powder

In a small bowl, combine sugar, cocoa, and butter. Add vanilla. Add milk gradually to achieve desired consistency, and stir until smooth.

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