Chocolate and vanilla battenberg cake

  • Total Time

    1h 5m
    • Prep Time

      40m
    • Bake Time

      25m
  • Serves

    8
  • Skill Level

    Intermediate
  • Dietary Needs

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This is a delicious twist on a traditional recipe that is perfect for a party or for afternoon tea.

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170 °C (fan 150 °C, gas mark  4). Grease the sides and bottom of a 20cm square tin with butter.

  2. Take a 20cm x 40cm sheet of baking parchment and the same of foil and grease the foil and then place the baking parchment on top so they are stuck together.

  3. With the baking parchment side on top, fold in half widthways like a book, then open out and push up the centre fold to make a 4cm pleat like an upside down “T”.

  4. Line the base of the tin with the foil side down ensuring the pleat is uppermost and is dead in the centre of the tin to create 2 identical rectangles within the tin. Ensure the paper lined foil is pushed into all the corners of the tin with a slight over hang on either side.

  5. In a large bowl add the flour, sugar, butter, eggs and baking powder and stir in until just combined.

  6. Divide the mixture into two bowls and to the first whisk in 2 teaspoons of milk and vanilla bean paste. To the other add the remaining milk and the cocoa powder and whisk.

  7. Spoon the vanilla mixture into one half of the tin and the cocoa one into the other half, ensuring the divider is still central and straight before smoothing the surface of each.

  8. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes until the cake has risen and springy to the touch. Allow to cool for a few minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack and removing the divider.

  9. Meanwhile make the icing by whisking together the butter, icing sugar, vanilla bean paste and milk until soft and smooth.

  10. Trim a centimetre off of the edge of each of the cakes and then cut each cake into 2 lengthways, ensuring all 4 strips are the same size and shape whereby the cross section of each is a square.

  11. Place a vanilla and chocolate strip next to each other and use the icing to stick them together. Spread some more icing over the top and then stick the 2 remaining strips together and place on top of the others in a chequerboard effect and ice the top.

  12. Roll the marzipan on a clean work surface dusted lightly with icing sugar to a rectangle 20cm x 25cm that is the same length of the cake and four times the width with a little extra to trim away.

  13. Invert the cake so icing side down and place 2cm in from the edge. Spread the remaining icing over the rest of the cake apart from the short ends.

  14. Carefully roll up the cake in the marzipan and use a small knife to make a seal where the marzipan joins. Trim the ends off to neaten.

  15. Place the cake, seal side down on a plate and crimp the two top edges and score a diamond pattern on the top using the back of a knife before serving.

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