I am thoroughly enjoying my summer here in Umbria this year. For a change, the temperatures have been very mild, and August in particular, has been one of the coolest I can remember. I have memories of trying to make jam or bake a cake in August with the temperature hanging around a hundred degrees and by the end of the day I feel utterly exhausted. This year, I made my jam in complete comfort, and I am able to bake whenever I am in the mood!
I would never consider myself a baker, but when we have guests staying in our farmhouse rental, I try to bake some sweet for them a couple of times a week. I like to bring over something warm from the oven such as muffins, cookies, a rustic cake, or a sweet loaf such as this one.
I do not enjoy baking since it is an exercise requiring precision, and often demands patience. I prefer cooking something savory, as I love to taste as I cook, throwing in a little of this or that as I prepare my meals. When you bake, you must measure each ingredient accurately, and unless one is very familiar with the recipe, you can only play around with the ingredients so much.
This quick loaf is lightly vanilla flavored, and it is marbled with chocolate. This cake also freezes well, so feel free to double the recipe and freeze one for another time. I enjoy a slice of this cake with my morning coffee as it isn’t too sweet, and a slice of this cake is a great way to start your day!
- 200 Grams Butter (7 Ounces), At Room Temperature
- 1 Cup (200 Grams) Sugar, Divided
- 1 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 3 Large Eggs, At Room Temperature
- 2 Cups (250 Grams)All-purpose Flour
- 3 Teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1/4 Cup Whole Milk
- 2 Teaspoons Unsweetened Cocoa
- Icing Sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and spray an 8 x 4 inch loaf pan with baking spray.
- In a bowl, beat together the butter and all but 2 tablespoons of the sugar with an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition.
- Add the vanilla.
- Dump in the flour and baking powder along with half the milk, and stir until mixed.
- Spoon two-thirds of the batter into the prepared pan.
- Add the cocoa, remaining sugar and milk to the remaining batter in the bowl, and mix until blended.
- Spoon the chocolate batter over the cake mixture in the pan, then run a knife through the batter to create a marble effect.
- Bake for 45 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out cleanly.
- Cool 10 minutes, then remove the loaf from the pan and continue to cool on a wire rack.
- Dust lightly with powdered sugar, slice, and enjoy!