Friday, July 2, 2010

RHC: Marble Velvet Cake

RHC: Marble Velvet CakeCake-of-the-week for the Heavenly Cake Bakers is not the Marble Velvet Cake, but the Chocolate Ice Cream Cake...which I made back in February and never blogged. I'll post about it on Monday. Rather than taking a week off, I wanted the de-stressing activity of baking and turned to my list of cakes Marie baked before the bake-along started. I was also in search of something to call my birthday cake (I generally bake my own), and the cake I baked *on* my birthday was the Rose GĂ©noise, which is not a style of cake I favor. I debated the Apple-Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake but decided it wasn't a 'birthday cake', then looked hard at the Black Chocolate Party Cake or the German Chocolate Cake but wasn't in the mood for complete chocolate and we just did a cake with coconut anyway. The Marble Velvet Cake fit my mood: not a coffeecake, a modicum of chocolate, and it's a butter cake, not a sponge.

The batter mixed up without too much difficulty. I did need 7 egg yolks instead of 6 to reach the specified weight--I'm more than supplied with extra whites for the Lemon Meringue Cake coming up in a few weeks. With sour cream for the dairy and the egg yolks only, I was expecting a very moist cake.

RHC: Marble Velvet CakeAs with most marble cakes, a part of the vanilla batter is removed and mixed with chocolate, Then the vanilla and chocolate batters are layered in a bundt pan (I used the lovely Heritage pan Raymond introduced us to) and lightly swirled to get the marbled effect. After the cake cooled, it got a finishing ganache glaze. I liked the idea of the glaze to get an extra chocolate hit--the chocolate in a marble cake can be very subtle.

RHC: Marble Velvet CakeRHC: Marble Velvet CakeMy cake rose almost too much, nearly closing the center hole of the bundt pan and dribbling a little batter out to burn on the oven floor. Beyond that it baked up beautifully, taking right at 50 minutes before my cake tester came out clean. The Heritage pan was not such a good choice for a cake to be glazed, though--the glaze caught on the wide ridges and either stopped, or ran down the ridges to the plate. I did a lot of nudging of piles of ganache to get them to cascade on over the bare lower half of the cake.

RHC: Marble Velvet CakeTaste results: it's the familiar refrain repeated by all my panel (basically, the folks next door this time): lovely texture, nice flavor, but dry. I served it with the suggested whipped cream which helped, but there's no getting around the fact that the cake is on the dry side. I'm hoping that the cake will seem a little moister tomorrow after it sits overnight.

I was very careful with my baking time to eliminate overbaking as a cause for this common complaint among many of the Heavenly Cake Bakers, so I think it just comes down to another one of those differences in style, akin to the sponge/butter cake divide. Almost every butter cake I've made from RHC seems to be too dry for my tastes.


  1. Happy Birthday! What a gorgeous looking cake. I'd gladly sing you happy birthday for a slice!

  2. It looks luscious! I also have a problem with dry things. I though the Gateau Breton was dry and wondered if I overbaked it.

  3. Happy Birthday! I agree with you about the butter cakes being too dry. I think I was getting used to that until I recently tried some other great recipes for butter cakes that were very moist. Mostly I thought I was over baking the cakes but it's good to know someone else feels the cakes...that said I do have a lot of favorite recipes in this book.

    I made this cake a few months ago and didn't blog about it. I served it to friends who absolutely loved it. By the time they had left (only one couple) there was less than a quarter of the cake left. When they were enjoying the cake I was complaining about it being too dry so I really was thinking it was all in my head!