Yes, that’s supposed to be a heart-shaped cake. However, no one
could would wait for me to take a photo of my finished product and I was too tired to fight off the cake eaters.
When I first saw this cake on Lululu at Home, the stripes immediately captured my attention (It’s actually more mesmerizing on a round-shaped cake). I was eager to find out how to get that pattern. Turns out that it was very easy and fun to prepare. Next time I make this cake, I’ll use the round cake pan. Oh, I used my homemade vanilla extract. I’m still so excited that I made my own vanilla extract. It and the cake were made with love. Did you know vanilla is an aphrodisiac?
By the way, can any one tell me why the top of my cake cracked?
Happy Valentine’s day to all.
(makes 9" cake)
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
4 large eggs, at room temp
1 cup white sugar
1 cup whole milk, at room temp
1 cup olive oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 9" round cake pan. Line with a parchment circle and butter the parchment.
Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine eggs and sugar. On medium speed, beat until the mixture is light and creamy. Add milk, oil, and vanilla extract and beat until well combined.
On low speed, add the flour mixture and mix until the flour is just incorporated.
Divide batter into 2 equal portions. Keep one portion plain. Add cocoa powder into another and mix well.
Scoop 1/4 cup of plain batter into the middle of the cake pan. Then scoop 1/4 cup of cocoa batter and pour it in the center (right on top) of the plain batter. Continue to alternate between the plain and cocoa batters (always pouring it in the center right on top of the previous batter) until you use up the batters.
Bake at 350F until golden or until a cake tested comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
Cool for 15 minutes in pan and then remove cake from pan to cool on a wire rack.
I’m so excited! I just can’t hide it! I know, I know, I know, I know that I’ll love it! Love it (*Sing to the tune of the Pointer Sisters song, I’m So Excited.)!
I made my own vanilla extract, y’all! Can you believe it!? I can’t. I’m soooo excited. Okay. Yeah, it takes very little to get me excited. I should probably get out more, but this IS exciting news for me. I never thought I’d ever make my own vanilla extract. And now, I have a whole lot.
Vanilla extract is very expensive — at least where I live, it is very expensive. A small bottle costs about four or five bucks. And I’m always forever running out of vanilla extract and having to buy more. Grrr! Very annoying.
Now, I’ll no longer have that problem. I’m so excited!
Last year, I read an excellent post by Garrett of Vanilla Garlic about vanilla beans from different locations. For example there’s Tahitian, Indian, Mexican vanilla. Their flavor differs according to where they’re grown. Who knew there were various types, for different uses? Who knew? I didn’t.
A few months later, Elise of Simply Recipes posted a recipe on how to make ones own vanilla extract. I saved the recipe until I finally had a chance to make it.
I bought my vanilla beans from Beanilla, and I chose the Mexican vanilla. According to Garrett’s description, "This vanilla is sweet, smooth and creamy. My personal favorite. Perfect for hot chocolate, liquors, creams, and cakes."
So, I used my Mexican vanilla to make my extract. I still have a few weeks before I can use it. In the meantime, it continues to get darker and darker. I can’t wait to use my very own vanilla extract.
*breaking into song and dance* I’m so excited! I just can’t hide it!
Homemade Vanilla Extract
Commercial vanilla extract usually has simple syrup (sugar water) added to the extract to give it a sweet aftertaste. You can do this if you want, but if you are using the vanilla for baking, there really is no need.
- 3 vanilla beans
- 1 cup vodka
- glass jar with tight fitting lid
1 Use kitchen scissors or a sharp paring knife to cut lengthwise down each vanilla bean, splitting them in half, leaving an inch at the end connected.
2 Put vanilla beans in a glass jar or bottle with a tight fitting lid (mason jars work well). Cover completely with the vodka.
3 Give the bottle a good shake every once in a while. Store in a dark, cool place for 2 months or longer.
Lasts for years. You can keep topping it off with vodka once in a while as you use it, just remember to give it a good shake.
You can also make vanilla sugar by putting a split vanilla bean into a jar of white, granulated sugar. Great way to infuse the sugar with vanilla flavor for baking.