Eye-candy cake with chocolate ganache
If you’ve been following this blog long enough, you might remember the zebra cake and the rainbow cake from three years ago. This cake — and I really can’t think of a better name for it except eye candy because it is so, so, soooo pretty — is a cross between the zebra cake and rainbow cake. Like the zebra cake, one portion of this eye-candy cake has cocoa powder. Like the rainbow cake, this eye-candy cake has three colors.
But unlike the zebra cake and the rainbow cake, I covered this eye-candy cake with chocolate ganache. Actually, I thought long and hard about the ganache part. The cake was so pretty with its cream, brown and pink patterns on the outside, and I wondered why I should cover up all that beauty.
In the end, the eating experience won over the visual delight. The ganache made the cake so much more delicious. And the eye-candy part? Well, once the cake was sliced, all the wonderful colors were revealed.
So, let’s make the cake.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Prepare a 10-inch round cake pan. If you don’t have a non-stick pan, you will have to grease the bottom and sides of your pan.
For the cake batter, follow the zebra cake recipe.
But instead of dividing the batter into two portions, divide it into three. Leave one portion as is, stir in 2 tbsps. of cocoa powder into the second portion and add a few drops of red food color to the third portion.
Pour the batter into the pan. Pour by quarter cups straight into the center of the pan. White, brown, pink — or whatever order you prefer. Pour each quarter cup of batter directly at the center of the previously poured batter — like making an archery target. Don’t wait for the first quarter cup of batter to spread totally before pouring in the next color. Work fast so that you’re like pushing the last quarter cup of batter to spread outward with the next quarter cup. Keep at it until all the batter has been poured in.
Bake at 350F for 55 minutes or until a skewer inserted at the center comes out clean.
Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Ganache thickens as it cools. Wait until the ganache has thickened somewhat but is still of pouring consistency.
While waiting for the ganache to cool, cut off the top of the cake. What for? Because the ganache will slide down if the top is mounded. So, cut off the top to make it flat. See the illustration on splitting a cake in the strawberry shortcake recipe. It’s the same principle — you just place the toothpicks right where the mound begins.
Keep the cake on the rack. Pour the ganache in a thin stream straight at the center. It will spread on its own.
Wait for the excess ganache to drip before transferring the cake to a plate or a cake stand, if you have one.