Tiger Cake – Alice Medrich
I saw this cake yesterday on Food52, first of all I am a sucker for a marble cake always have been and then when I saw that it is made with olive oil I knew I had to make it. A cake made with oil would be incredibly moist and have a very tender crumb, both are requisites for a really good cake, IMHO. I also love recipes by Alice Medrich, she knows a thing or two about baking. With a little spare time today I undertook this cake, now I have made marble cakes before and you usually drag a butter knife around the batter to give the marble effect, well you don’t do that with this cake. You pour your batters separately, layering them and just bake it like that. I was a little skeptical. I had to force myself not to get the knife and start swirling,
Tiger Cake – Alice Medrich
Makes 1 cake in a 10-to-12 cup tube pan
1/2 cup (25 grams) natural cocoa powder (non-alkalized, non-Dutch processed)
1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
1/3 cup water
3 cups (385 grams) all-purpose unbleached flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups (400 grams) sugar
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon finely ground white pepper
5 cold eggs
1 cup cold milk
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter or spray a 10-to-12 cup tube pan with oil spray and dust it with flour.
In a medium large bowl, whisk the cocoa, sugar, and water until well blended.
In another medium large bowl, whisk the flour and baking powder thoroughly and sift onto a piece of wax paper. Set aside.
In a the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the sugar, oil, vanilla, salt, and pepper until well blended. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue to beat until the mixture is thick and pale, 3 to 5 minutes. Stop the mixer and add one-third of the flour mixture. Beat on low speed just until blended. Stop the mixer and add half of the milk. Beat just until it is blended. Repeat with another third of the flour, the remaining milk, and then the remaining flour.
Add three cups of the batter to the cocoa mixture and stir until blended. Pour one-third of the plain batter into the prepared pan and top with one third of the chocolate batter. Repeat with the remaining batters. Don’t worry about marbling the batters—that happens during the baking.
Bake 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Set the pan on a rack to cool. Slide a skewer around the tube and a thin metal spatula (or knife) around the sides of the pan. Lift the tube and slide the spatula under the cake to detach it from the pan bottom. Transfer the cake to a serving platter. The cake keeps for several days, at room temperature, under a dome or wrapped in plastic.
As you can see from the photo’s below, it swirled nicely on it’s own. I like the cake. It has good crumb, baked nicely. I think it would be great with a chocolate glaze drizzled on top or with some ice cream.
The next time I will add more salt, like at least 1/2 tsp, and maybe some orange zest. Note: I forgot to add the white pepper.
Thanks so much Anatoli, it is pretty delicious!
wow–fantastic! lol, Alice Medrich knows a thing or two about baking. Indeed she does. What are we doing, swirling batters with knives when it turns out this way without? Ha. Cake looks great, Suzanne. And what I love most is that you see a cake recipe and decide to make it–bam. Easily drawn in, just like me 🙂
I know all these years I swirl and who knew it’s an unnecessary step. I will often see something and make it immediately if I have the time. I wanted something sweet so this really fit the bill and I love cakes made with oil. Thanks so much Liz.
Thanks so much Josephine!
Beautiful!! Looks so delicious!
Thank you Crystal!
I saw it too! And it also caught my eye, it is one of our favourites here at home. Yours looks wonderful and I would be ready to have a slice anytime!! Your photos of the cake are fantastic Suzanne, congrats!
That cake just popped out at me and I knew I had to make it. Thanks Viviana, if you lived closer I would gladly bring you a slice!!
Wow – the texture of this cake is fabulous! Next time, I need to bake with olive oil! Thanks for sharing this recipe Suzanne!
I love cakes that use oil the texture is fantastic and they are so moist. Thanks Shashi.
Love it! It’s spectacular when you slice into it. I’ll bring out the bundt pan this weekend and give it a go. Love the look of your book “Pug Hill”! 🙂 I also like cake without icing, this seems to be a good one to leave unadorned.
Yes, it’s a great cake to have with a cup of coffee completely unadorned. It’s delicious. I started reading Pug Hill a few years ago and decided to finish it, it’s a sweet book. Thanks so much.
Is it a book about dogs? I really like dog stories. Ha! There’s a good one called The Art of Racing in the Rain that I really enjoyed…
Yes there is a hilly place in Central Park and hundreds of pug owners converge in this spot hence the name pug hill u can actually see the gaggle of pugs running and playing in this spot all the time it’s so much fun.
hahaha! I love it.
Thank you Georgie!
Gorgeous looking cake. I made a rectangular one recently but I like your round one. Pug Hill looks right up your street 😉
Yes, I love pug hill, such a cute and fun book. I was thinking I would like this cake in a loaf pan rather than round. Ha!
Perhaps we should swap then!
If I lived down the road I’d walk my round pan to you!
Olive oil is a great ingredient for a cake. The cake turns out really moist. Yours looks amazing, Suzanne! Also the texture is perfect. Great tip about the batters’s layering. I’ll go for it next time.
Thank you, Suzanne! 🙂
It really is, I love using olive oil for sweet and savory dishes. The cake is very moist and you can really taste the chocolate which I was afraid would not be the case. Thank you so much Francesca!
Oh, how I wish I could have a slice! It looks so pretty and it’s interesting that the marbling worked without swirling the mix with a knife. The book caught my eye “Pug Hill” – is it fiction? Lovely images BTW.
I wish I could give you a slice. I was amazed at how nice the marbling was without the swirl. I love that book, yes it’s fiction but based on a real event that happens all the time in Central Park. It’s quite funny, at least what I have read and very cute. Got to love pugs, they are personality personified. Thanks so much.
What a perfectly delicious stripe, so gorgeous 😀
I want to eat its fluffiness asap!
Choc Chip Uru
I just love the marble effect it’s so pretty. Thanks so much Uru!
Gorgeous, and it does look like a tiger cat pattern 🙂 I used to insist on baking with butter until I learned how moist oil really makes a cake — I’ve been wanting to try an olive oil cake, and this looks just perfect.
Butter makes a delicious cake but cakes made with oil are so moist and the crumb so fine, I love baking with oil. Thanks so much.
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Love the perfect swirls! I’ve never made a swirl cake, it might be time!
Thank you Tracy, its so easy, it is a self swirl cake, LOL!!
Looks so delicious! Your recipes always inspire me 🙂
Thank you so much Julian, same here, your blog educates, inspires and entertains.
Alice Medrich is an amazing baker. When I was in school, she came to teach a few classes on baking, and specifically working with chocolate. This cake was one of the things we made with her. Thanks for the reminder of this great cake. My grandchildren would love a tiger cake!!
Oh how lucky that you actually met and were taught by her. I love this cake, it’s so moist and delicious and yes the kids love the tiger stripes!! Thanks Susan
What a wonderful cake Suzanne! I didn’t notice when I originally saw the recipe it calls for olive oil rather than butter. Delightful! We really enjoyed this for dessert tonight. The contrast between the chocolate and vanilla was so prominent. We whipped up a lovely sweet ricotta cream to go along with it. What a hit and I’ll happily pack a few slices in tomorrows lunch for all of us! Thank you for another delicious recipe!
Oh wow thank you for reporting back and thrilled that it was a hit with the family. It is a really good cake and the olive oil is a big plus for me. Thank you so much!
I’ve never seen a cake recipe with white pepper in it before. That sounds fascinating… do you think it’d just add a bit of ‘warmth’ to it? The finished cake looks wonderful anyway… love those very discernable swirls. I’m definitely going to give it a go, but in a normal cake pan rather than a bundt (as I still don’t have one… I think I need to invest in one soon) and I’ll try your suggestion of the glaze. Yum. Loving Seana’s suggestion of the whipped ricotta cream as well… oh my! x
I forgot to add the pepper, but I have had pepper in cake before and it adds a little warmth and an ever so slight peppery flavor. It’s really nice with the chocolate. Yes the whipped ricotta cream is a perfect addition to the cake. Thanks Laura.
Ground white pepper – in a cake! Love that idea. I’ve never read that before. Bet it goes well with cocoa. Come to think of it, black pepper goes well with banana and lemon. But I’ve never tried that combination either.
Yes I think the white pepper and cocoa is a wonderful combination. I have never had the black pepper with banana and lemon, sounds delish!!
You cake looks delicious and Suzanne! I enjoy making cakes, especially bundt cakes. I just printed your recipe and plan to give it a try soon. I have a ‘special’ Chocolate Chip bundt cake that I make and has become a favorite with family and friends. It’s my go to cake because it is so good, delicious and it’s got a lot of chocolate! check out my recipe 🙂
Thank you so much yes your chocolate chip cake sounds great. Always looking for another great cake recipe.