Marbled throughout, the sponge creates an impressive bake that is easy to achieve and perfect for a special occasion. Whether you choose to cover it in buttercream or not, the end result will still stand out...
Super moist and spongy, the banana and cacao marbled sponge balances beautifully with the zingy orange marmalade and chocolate orange buttercream filling.
Orange, banana and chocolate? Yes, I wasn't sure on my choice to begin with but I was trying to create a good flavoured buttercream that would compliment the chocolate banana cake, with ingredients I had in my kitchen. My first thought was salted caramel, but I didn't have the right ingredients for this so I thought I would try a chocolate orange approach, and actually the results were really successful!
The marble effect does take a little more effort than usual, as you have to split the cake batter in half, and add cacao (or cocoa) to one half to create the brown colour, and a little extra flour to the other half for the lighter colour before mixing through ready to pour into the cake tins.
Generally I tend not to be that precise, so I just guessed by eye half of the mixture when dividing into 2 (rather than weighing it) and it worked fine; so there is hope!
This really is the perfect coffee and cake instalment - I don’t think you even need an excuse to eat it!
Note: I used two 6 inch spring form cake tins for 2 reasons:
1. I can fit both tins side by side in my oven without having to rotate, resulting in an evenly bake on both halves.
2. I have found that this size works better (more realistically) for a sandwich cake for everyday eating. Using 8 inch cake tins results in larger slices, and usually ends up in too much cake being eaten - in our households' case!
175g gluten free plain flour (or plain wheat flour if tolerable)
50g white rice flour
25g corn flour
pinch of xanthum gum (if using gluten free flour)
50g caster sugar
50g coconut sugar
1/2 tsp bicarb of soda
1/2 tsp mixed spice powder
1/2 tsp salt
110g butter or dairy free alternative
4tbsp milk of choice
2tbsp maple syrup
3 bananas mashed
1tsp apple cider vinegar
1tsp vanilla extract
For the swirl stage:
3/4 tbsp cacao powder
3/4 tbsp extra gluten free plain flour
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C/Gas mark 4, and line the base of two 6” cake tins.
Sieve the plain flour, rice flour, cornflour, xanthum gum, caster sugar, coconut sugar, bicarb of soda, mixed spice and salt in a large mixing bowl and whisk through until fully combined. Divide the dry mixture evenly between 2 bowls.
In 1 bowl add the cacao powder and in the other add the extra flour.
Weigh out the butter and add half (55g) to each bowl.
In a jug, mix together the remaining ingredients; milk, maple syrup, vinegar, vanilla extrace and mashed bananas until combined. Divide the wet mixture evenly between the 2 bowls. Note - it doesn’t matter if it is not exact!
Whisk together the ingredients in each bowl for about 1 minute until well combined.
In your prepared cake tins, pour half of the light batter in each tin, and then pour half of the brown batter. With a knife or spoon, gently swirl the 2 batters to mix the colours through. Note - make sure not to overmix, as you will loose the swirl effect.
Place in the middle of the oven for 25-30mins, until a skewer comes out clear. Leave on a cooling rack in tins until fully cooled before assembling with buttercream and marmalade.
For the filling and topping:
juice and zest of 1 satsuma or clementine
320g icing sugar
2 tbsp cacao powder - add more for a darker colour
140g butter (or dairy free alternative)
2 tbsp good quality orange marmalade
10g dark chocolate
Make the buttercream by whisking together the butter, icing sugar, cacao powder, orange juice and orange zest until light and fluffy.
Remove cakes from tins and place 1 on a plate or cake stand. Spread the marmalade and then a thin layer of buttercream. Place the other cake on top and use the rest of the buttercream to cover the entire cake - it should spread quite easily.
Finally, grate the dark chocolate over the top of the cake for the finishing touch. You can also grate some more orange zest over the top to add some colour if you like!
Be careful: It's particularly moorish...