Zebra cakes are one of the easiest cakes that we can make at home and everybody will love it.
I can never get tired of making zebra cake as it is always fun making the cake with pretty zebra stripes. It is very rewarding to see the zebra stripes in the cake, once it is sliced
Zebra cake is my absolute favorite because ,
it contain both chocolate and vanilla flavors,
they are so light ,airy and moist,
its a protein rich cake,
made with no chemical leaveners
and they are so easy to make .
INGREDIENTS NEEDED TO MAKE ZEBRA CAKE
I recommend you to kindly follow the measurements in grams than cups as it is more accurate.
All Purpose Flour : 90g [1/2 cup (65g)+3 tbsp]
Cornflour :1 tbsp (10 g)
Eggs : 4
Sugar :100 g (1/2 cup)
Any flavorless oil: 45 g (3 tbsp+1 tsp)
Milk: 50 g (3 tbsp+1 tsp)
Vanilla extract :2 tsp
A pinch of salt
Cocoa powder :1 tbsp (7-8 g)
My cake pan is 18 cm or 7 inch diameter.
HOW TO MAKE ZEBRA CAKE
This Zebra cake is a cake which totally depend on eggs for the texture and structure.
So Eggs are one of the key ingredient in making this zebra cake.We are not adding any baking soda or baking powder in this zebra cake recipe.
As egg white foam is the only leavener in this zebra cake cake recipe,we need to be very careful while baking this cake.
WHAT IS THE IDEAL BAKING TEMPERATURE FOR THIS ZEBRA CAKE
The baking temperature is one of the crucial thing in baking this zebra sponge cake.
We need to bake this cake in a very low temperature when compared with many other cakes.300 F or 150 C.And hence we need a longer baking time to get it completely cooked.So keep in mind that weed to be gentle while mixing the batter and while baking it in the oven.
We can bake this cake at higher temperature;but it can cause the top of the cake to crack.
Whipping the egg whites will create lot of small air pockets which are the magic bombs in this recipe.
1.PREPARE THE CAKE BATTER
So lets start by separating the egg whites and egg yolk in two separate bowls.
WE need to whip the egg whites until they form medium stiff peaks.We need to select fresh eggs and better if they are at room temperature;i found it very difficult to whip up the cold egg whites.
Adding a teaspoon of some acidic ingredient ,like lemon juice,vinegar,or cream of tartar is supposed to help you get more stabilized foam.But in this recipe i thought of of trying it without anything acidic and they came out pretty good.
Whisk the egg white, until slightly foamy then add half of the sugar( 50 g ,little by little) and whisk until medium stiff peaks form using an electric mixer.You can see in the video that the peaks are stable ..
If we overbeat,the egg whites may start to brittle and the foam will not function effectively.
Into the bowl of egg yolks,add sugar and salt and whisk them until pale yellow in color and then add all the liquid ingredients into it i.e. milk,oil and vanilla extract.Sift in the flour into this and mix just until they form a smooth batter.
Very gently fold the egg white into the egg yolk batter. Add in three small batches so that we can do it gently and thus prevent the egg foam to from deflating much.
Mix gently just until you get a smooth batter.
Our cake batter is now ready.
As we need two separate batters a chocolate batter and vanilla batter ;to make this double flavored zebra sponge cake,lets pour half of the batter into another bowl and then sift and add 1 tbsp of cocoa powder into one bowl.
Gently mix the cocoa powder into the batter and we got the chocolate batter too…
2. POUR THE CAKE BATTER INTO PREPARED PAN
Now lets pour in our batter into a prepared baking vessel.
How i prepared the baking pan.
I have lined the bottom of baking vessel with a parchment paper.
As we need to place the baking pan in water bath in the oven ,if your pan is not leak proof,then to safeguard from any leakage,seal the bottom of pan with an aluminum foil.
Spoon 3-4 tablespoons of the plain batter into the centre of the 7-inch cake pan. Then add 2-3 tablespoons of the cocoa batter on top and repeat until all batter has been used.
The batter may have some suspension at the bottom ,so while taking the batter for pouring into the cake tin,gently mix the batter and then take with spoon,so that we will get light batter even when we take the last spoons.Other wise,if the last spoons of batter are heavy and thick,they may not rise properly and may cause the center of the dome of cake to be sunken.
When you finish pouring all the batter,
Tap the pan on a surface a few times to get rid of big air bubbles,Otherwise large air bubbles may break open on top of the cake surface when baked and it can affect the beauty of the cake.Then place the cake pan in a larger baking tray filled with 1/2 ” room temperature water for a water bath.
3. BAKE THE CAKE at 300 F preheated oven for 85-90 minutes
Place the tray on the bottom rack of the oven,by this i meant to keep it far away from heating coils..so that the top will not get browned fast.
The cake will form its full structure around 45-50 minutes of baking.But it does not mean that the cake is done.
To make sure your cake to succeed even better. It is best to use an oven thermometer and you’ll always have the exact temperature of your oven in mind.
Once the cake is well cooked(after around 80-85 minutes of baking),switch off the oven and leave the cake in the oven for 10 more minutes and then take it out.Sudden variation in temperature may cause an unpleasant shrinkage of cake.
WHY DO MY SPONGE CAKE CRACK ON TOP
As this cake is is based on feeble air pockets based on eggs,they are very sensitive to heat.Cakes crack when the oven temperature is too high or, when the pan is placed on an incorrect rack.
In an oven that’s too hot, the outside of the cake cooks at a much faster rate than the inside. A crust forms early on, but as the inside of the cake continues to cook and rise, this crack crusts. This may also happen,if you’ve used a pan that’s too small.
HOW TO PREVENT THIS ISSUE
- Make sure your oven is at the right temperature. Get a thermometer; make sure it’s accurate.
- Use the appropriate-sized pan.
- To encourage even cooking use water bath method of baking. The water will steam and cause the cake to cook more evenly.
- Avoid opening and closing the oven during baking, as this can cause the temperature to fluctuate.
WHY TO USE A WATER BATH IN OVEN
A water bath is simply a pan of hot water placed in the oven, and using this method has two benefits when baking.
First, a water bath adds moisture to the oven and it is beneficial in baking these kind of cakes which tend to crack on top.
Second, using the water bath method also provides a more even, slower heat source than the direct heat of an oven.
Watch the video to see how easy it is to make soft and fluffy zebra cake
Do not bake the cake quickly at a high temperature and don’t remove hot cake out of a baking pan. otherwise the cake could fall apart and crack on top.
Baking cake at a lower temperature will help the cake rise much higher and bake more evenly.
Cover with foil after a few minutes if the top of cake starts to get brown and this will help continue to rise nicely with a golden top.
This cake doesn’t have any leavening agents so be careful not to deflate the egg foam while mixing. that’s the only thing makes the cake rise.
Be careful when separating eggs, if there’s any yolk in the egg whites it won’t whip up properly!
The water bath is important as it keeps the cake cooking at a steady temperature
Be careful not to open the oven during the baking process.
Soft and Fluffy Zebra sponge cake
- 90 g flour 1/2 cup+3 tbsp
- 100 g sugar 1/2 cup
- 50 g milk 3 tbsp+1 tsp
- 45 g oil any flavorless oil 3 tbsp+1 tsp
- 10 g corn flour 1 tbsp
- 7-8 g cocoa powder 1 tbsp
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 1/8 tsp salt
- Prepare the cake batterSeparate the egg yolks and egg whites in to two separate bowls.Whisk the egg white, until slightly foamy then add half of the sugar( 50 g ,little by little) and whisk until medium stiff peaks form using an electric mixer.You can see in the video that the peaks are stable .
Into the bowl of egg yolks,add sugar and salt and whisk them until pale yellow in color and then add all the liquid ingredients into it i.e. milk,oil and vanilla extract.Sift in the flour into this and mix just until they form a smooth batter.Very gently fold the egg white into the egg yolk batter. Add in three small batches so that we can do it gently and thus prevent the egg foam to from deflating much.Mix gently just until you get a smooth batter.Pour half of the batter into another bowl and then sift and add 1 tbsp of cocoa powder into one bowl.Gently mix the cocoa powder into the batter and we got the chocolate batter.
- Pour in the batter into the baking pan.Spoon 3-4 tablespoons of the plain batter into the centre of the 7-inch cake pan. Then add 2-3 tablespoons of the cocoa batter on top and repeat until all batter has been used.Tap the pan on a surface a few times to get rid of big air bubbles,Otherwise large air bubbles may break open on top of the cake surface when baked and it can affect the beauty of the cake.Then place the cake pan in a larger baking tray filled with 1/2 ” room temperature water for a water bath.
- Bake the cake at 300F/150C in the lower rack of oven for 85-90 minutes.
- Happy baking 🙂