Thursday, 3 June 2010

150th post and a Zebra Cake in my Kitchen too!



Finally Shab’s Cuisine hits another milestone! It’s been more than two years that I have been blogging my recipes and thoughts and in here and I very much enjoyed every moment of it. I never ever thought I could go so far because I am not the kind of person who is so much dedicated to any hobby apart from blogging. I get all bored after a while and stop it and then forgot about it. But this blog which once was just started to save my recipes and a mere time pass has become a passion and more than that a place to virtually pour my thoughts! I never knew I even had love for cooking until I started this little space of mine! I guess it was hidden in me until I started a blog.

I have never bothered to learn cooking until I settled down completely with my husband, and I guess there are plenty out there like me. During my college days, all I used to do was carrying some dictated recipes of my mom to UK whenever I paid him a visit during my holidays. I thought cooking was so easy, that I could easily cook whatever is written in my book taken from my mom who always gave me approximated measurements. I never bothered to peek into kitchen those days when my mom used to cook for us. When I started cooking from the notes, I realised that it was not an easy thing to start with and I didn’t even know the very basic of cooking like know how much salt to add, how long onions to be sautéed for a simple curry and even how to boil rice! Even then, I turned my back on cooking and din’t bother to learn a bit. That was how much I hated cooking once! Later when I completed my studies and settled with my hubby, I felt that I need to learn at least basic cooking to survive. Started collecting recipes on bits and pieces of paper, and little books, diaries etc . I lost many of my precious recipes because those were scribbled on bits and pieces of paper which I left somewhere carelessly and got lost. I used to see so many blogs around and try many recipes with successful results and that was when I thought I also should start saving my recipes online after perfecting them to suit our taste! Started a blog for fun and here it is now! I still am not sure how far I will be going on with this, but as long as I have support from my readers and friends.


 
Initially I dint even know something like measuring spoons and cups existed, so all the measurements used to be taken down using regular spoons in my kitchen. I tried the same recipes with measuring spoons and it gave me different results. So I am trying to edit all the recipes using standard measuring spoons and cups.I have learnt so much from blogging, I am introduced to wide range of foods from around the world and fantastic foodies. I also prepare loads of them at home and try to perfect them as it goes. After the blog was started, I did watch too much of cookery programs which ate up so much of time once which I have reduced almost to none due to lack of time. But I still search loads of recipes, peek on many blogs, comment on as much as time allows me. The number of cook books on my shelves is also on tremendous increase and too are the vessels! My camera was upgraded from a simple but a high end point and shoot camera to a Digital SLR. I also believe that my photography (at least for the macro pictures) has become much better than before. Hasn’t it? I also try to collect anything and everything that looks good on pictures be it a shell, a ribbon, flowers, leaves or a piece of paper to make a better background for my pictures, but sometimes I take pictures in a hurry not giving importance for anything. I have also gained loads of wonderful friends and readers who are so inspiring without whom this blog would have far been dead. Thanks to all for the wonderful comments and inspiration. That really kept me going and still keeps me going.


Now, coming to the recipe, Zebra cake is one of the prettiest cakes on its own. It looks pretty as it is, without any frosting done. The cake is similar to the marble cake, but the patterns is zebra striped which make it look stunning. I have seen this cake baked on so many blogs, so this might not be new to many of you. I had prepared this quite a while back with half the amount mentioned in the original recipe and using a 6 inch pan. The result was perfect except for the sweetness part which was really low for our taste. For that reason, I added more sugar and a pinch of salt when I made it the second time. Last weekend we had a get together with our friends and I baked this cake and took along. I also made a simple icing to go with it that I prepared for Celebration chocolate cake. It tasted fantastic with the icing on and everyone absolutely loved it. I first spotted this cake on Farida Azerbaijani's Blog. Have a peek at her wonderful blog to get the original recipe. Here is my tweeked version of it to suit our taste.

Ingredients:

4 large eggs at room temperature
1 1/3 cup castor sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups+ 2 Tbsp plain flour
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
3 Tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup milk at room temperature
2 pinch salt

For icing,:
Preparations:


 
1.Grease and line a 9 inch deep cake pan. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius 10 minutes before baking.

2. Combine sugar and eggs and beat on high speed around 8 minutes until it becomes thick and pale yellow in colour.

3. Add in milk and oil and beat for 30 seconds until thoroughly combined. Add in vanilla essence and beat again.

4. In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt and baking powder and mix well.

5. Add this flour mixture to the wet mixture and beat just until combined and no dry flour is visible. Don’t overbeat the mixture after adding the flour since it will knock out the airy bubbles and result in a heavy cake.

6. Divide the batter into half. In one half of batter add sifted cocoa powder and mix well. Leave the other half plain.

7. Now pour 3 Tablespoons of plain batter in the centre of the pan. Pour 3 Tablespoons of cocoa batter in the centre of the white batter. Don’t spread the batter or wait to spread. It will spread by itself as it goes. Pour Another 3 tablespoon of white batter in the centre of cocoa batter and then cocoa batter. Continue pouring until all the batter is used up. I used separate spoons for both batter to make it easier. If you have a ladle that holds 3 tablespoons of batter, you can use that. Here, I used heaped tablespoon of cocoa batter and scant tablespoon plain batter, hence more prominent cocoa stripes and less white straps.

8. Place the pan in the centre of the oven and bake till done or when the skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. The original recipe mentions 45 minutes, but mine took 1 hour 5 minutes.

Once the cake is completely cooled, serve as required, plain or with whipped cream frosting or any icing. I did the same frosting that I did for celebration chocolate cake and it tasted just divine.

40 comments:

An Open Book said...

That has come out real well..mine was a flop although i did put it up on my fb page:)
May u ahve many more awesome posts on the blog..

Foodessa said...

This is only my 2nd visit...and I'm so glad I came to see you again.
This cake's chic appearance has been a real eye-opener for me.
Basically...I truly had never seen this done before ;)
Thanks for explaining your technique...definitely a keeper!
Flavourful wishes, Claudia

Priti said...

Congrats dear...wish your blog many more posts to come..cake looks absolute delicious and perfect...lovely clicks

Ambika said...

Congratulations!! The zebra cake looks perfect!!

Aruna Manikandan said...

Congrats on ur 150th post!!!
and wishing u many more success dear...

Zebra cake looks perfect and delicious.
Nice clicks :-)

Sailaja Damodaran said...

Turned out perfect.Congrats

divya said...

oh wow, that is really a delicious and colorful looking cake. Nicely done.nice pictures dear...

Maria said...

Congrats dear! I love the way you write the recipes, even covering the minute details. Your pictures are also very pretty! Whenever I get requests from readers for Malabar special readers I sent them your link :).

Wishing you and your blog the very best!

Cheers
Maria

Mamatkamal said...

Beautiful cake!

Kairali sisters said...

A big congrats to you Shabs on the milestone, We love your space..Wishing you many many more happy blogging days ahead.

Zebra cake looks perfect and yummy..Can a piece right away..

Love
Kairali sisters

Smitha Stephan said...

hey shabs! congratulations on your 150th post! and kudos to you for being so consistent with your blog, i dont know when i'll ever have that kind of discipline! the zebra cake looks so good and your food photography is beautiful.

Rachana Kothari said...

Hey Shabs,

Congratulations on your 150th post! The Zebra Cake looks perfect and awesome photography!

Nimi said...

congrats shabs..kidillan cake...kidillan post!
Your cake is really inviting..even I too love making zebra cakes..
keep up the good work!

luv

Nimi

Sanyukta Gour(Bayes) said...

congrats and hope u hv 1000000000000more milestones soon...the zebra cake looks tempting and divine,.,,lovely pics

Shabs.. said...

Thanks u all for the wishes...without u all, i wouldnt be able to make it.Love you all....

Shabs.

simply.food said...

Congrats on crossing this mile stone.Zebra cake looks wonderful and moist.

Cool Lassi(e) said...

Congrats on your wonderful milestone.You chose well for a milestone post. I so want to make this at home but do I have enough patience to wait till the batter spreads out all on its own like concentric rings? Dunno but Want to try this. Its the most beautiful Zebra Cake I have seen. It has turned out perfectly perfect. Bookmarked!
I am so in love with your Zebra Cake. I guess you pretty much guessed how much with the way i am going on..lol..Ciao dear!

Vibaas said...

Shabs, first of all thanks for checking on me. i havent been blogging or bloghopping in a long while. i'm doing fine, but it is just too hectic. how are you dear? The zebra cake looks absolutely delicious!!

AdukalaVishesham said...

wow that looks beautiful and loved your presentation... and big congrats on your milestone...

Linda www.mykindofcooking.com said...

WOW 150 posts! Congratulations! I love to read your blog and look forward to the next 150 blog posts!

Suman Singh said...

Congrats on ur 150th post..and wishing u many more success Shabs!

Zebra cake looks elegant and delicious..lovely pics!

Yummy Team said...

Congrats on your 150th post!! Zebra cake looks fabulous, brilliant pics too..Bookmarked!

I'm a Home Chef !!! said...

perfect!

Life is beautiful!!! said...

Shabs, thats ofcourse a gr8 milestone. Loved each and every line you wrote. Everything came directly from your heart. The cake and the preparation looks lovely dear. You are definitely a wonderful cook :). CONGRATULATIONS !!! You should be very proud of your milestone.

Priya said...

COngrats Shabs, keep rocking gal..cake looks beautiful and prefect!

Saju Sharfu said...

congratualtions dear..keep up the great work..ur zebra cake has come out so perfect..just beautiful!!

Nitha said...

Congratulations Shabs... The Zebra cake looks so perfect.. This would be my next cake for sure....

Leena said...

Cake is beautiful and perfect for any occasion!

M D said...

Hey, I liked ur write up and I think most of us have been through the same phase as you have been through. Loved ur zebra cake, esp the clicks. Very beautiful.

Parita said...

Congratulations!! Wish you many such milestones ahead! Look at those perfect stripes! Fab!

Fajeeda said...

congrats dear.............cake looks yummy.........i too made this last week.......soon i'll also b here........

Anonymous said...

shabs...congrats for ur awesome blog...reading this post gives me the comfort that maybe one day i wil also be able to cook well; for now am too dependent on my mom(!)..

and the zebra cake is gorgeous..!!
--fais

Swapna said...

Congrats on your 150th post!!! That's a perfect and beautiful Zebra cake!!!

Divya Kudua said...

Congrats on the 150th post Shabs..wishing you many more!!Your post reminded me of my own trials and errors in the kitchen..and blogging can make you addictive,that I can guarantee you..hehe!!

Love the clicks..Zebra Cake looks perfect..it has been a long time since I made it and your pics are making me drool and tempting me enough to try it again!!

Mallugirl said...

congrats shabs!! whew time really flies. i also make the zebra cake just for the beauty of it!

Shabs.. said...

Thnaks to all for the wishes....Without your support, i owuldnt have come so far....so a big thank u once again....

Zoyah said...

GORGEOUS!

(and the cake's not so bad, either) :)

Keep cooking/baking! I love looking at your blog! Hope all is well!

xoxo

Zoyah

Sharmilee! :) said...

Luv the pattern u've got..looks yum

Nachiketa said...

Congrats... I can understand the huge effort which goes into 150 posts.... :)

Lovely pictures and cake...

My Zebra Cake for the Rajpals was salvaged by a friend :)

Even got a New baker Triumph with a zebra cake...

disqus_S05W9CDP3R said...

I tried this out yesterday and it was my second cake I ever baked and it did come out very well. Thank you.
I was actually planning to make the lemon cake but my husband didn;t quite appreciate the lemon flavour with the cake, so went for this one. Anyway, I sure plan to make the lemon cake one day.

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