Make Ahead

Regina's Marble Cake

October  4, 2011
1 Ratings
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 55 minutes
  • Makes 1 cake
Author Notes

Recently I discovered this recipe in my mother's album of her favorites. It originated with our neighbor, Regina, who was a Czech refugee who had endured and survived Hitler's death march, moved to New York City after the war and then became a mail order bride to a chicken farmer who lived next to us in Petaluma.She was a fabulous cook and baker. I don't think I can remember a time that this marble cake was not on her counter ready for us to sneak a slice. I usually leave it real plain jane, but I have included a orange glaze for those who like a little extra sweetness and sugary crunch. —dymnyno

What You'll Need
  • 3/4 cup Crisco or butter
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • 3 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract(or vanilla)
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate( unsweetened cocoa powder)
  • Orange glaze: 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon grand marnier, 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice and the zest of 1 orange (blood orange if you can find one) Simply put all in a little pot and heat until melted and clear and pour over the cake.
  1. Mix the butter, sugar, milk, flour, baking powder and orange extract together.
  2. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix well.
  3. Put one third of the batter in another bowl and add the chocolate and mix thoroughly.
  4. In a tube or bundt pan,(I recommend a non stick tube pan) put a layer of half of the white batter. Then pour in all the chocolate batter, and then, the rest of the white batter.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour, but check for doneness after 45 minutes. Ovens are all different!
  6. Remove from pan. Regina never frosted her cake , nor do I. However, I have added a grand marnier glaze for those who would like a little extra sweetness and crunch of sugar.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • drbabs
  • dymnyno
  • ChefJune
  • Bevi
  • petrichor

24 Reviews

drbabs December 15, 2014
Oh, Mary, I love this recipe so much. I'm so glad you posted it again.
dymnyno December 24, 2013
Thanks, June. This recipe is exactly as Regina made it at least 60 or more years ago...I didn't change a thing.
ChefJune December 23, 2013
dymnyno, I'm SO glad you entered this cake in this contest -- so I could find the recipe! I LOVE marble cake. Think I'll make it tonight to have an "extra" dessert around for Wednesday.
heidizag October 9, 2011
Hi - I just stumbled upon the site looking for a recipe for marble cake for my sick husband who wanted one just like his mom's - but I've never made one before. I just popped this in the oven! I made a few minor changes - I used plain Greek yogurt instead of milk, and I added a tsp of hazelnut flavoring to the "brown" batter - not exactly like his mom's, but who doesn't want something resembling Nutella when they're sick? :) Other than that I followed the recipe exactly. Even if it doesn't cure his cold, I'm sure it will be delicious! (The uncooked batters sure were...)
dymnyno October 9, 2011
OOOOH I love your little changes! The yogurt instead of milk (nonfat yogurt?) probably makes the cake a lot more moist. And, nutella is a flavor that I love. (I have a recipe for homemade nochella/nutella ). Let me know how it turns out, and I hope that your husband feels better.
drbabs October 7, 2011
AARGH! Pieces broke off (delicious...) when I took it out of the bundt pan! I even followed the Cook's Illustrated technique and carefully buttered and flowered the pan. Oh well, will have to make a ganache or something.
dymnyno October 7, 2011
So Sorry! I made it exactly as described and used a tube pan. I didn't butter and flour the pan because there is so much butter in the batter.
Lizthechef October 7, 2011
It happens to the best of us...
dymnyno October 7, 2011
I know, but I feel terrible. Maybe it was easier with a tube pan.
drbabs October 7, 2011
Oh, totally my fault. I should have let it cool a little longer. Now I'm trying to figure out if I can make icing with what I have in the house. Worst case, i'll serve it as is. The people will have been fasting all day--It will be gone before anyone figures out that I broke it.

(Oh and I meant that I floured the pan, not flowered. :) )
Bevi October 7, 2011
This brings back memories of many marble cakes my grandmother used to make.
petrichor October 7, 2011
I have always loved marble cake. I am excited to try this recipe!
Lizthechef October 5, 2011
A recipe with a story, my very favorite. Your timing is perfect - as is the recipe!
dymnyno October 5, 2011
I am not Jewish and didn't remember that this week is your high holiday. I don't know what made me remember this recipe but it would be so appropriate for breaking your fast. It is not a real moist pudding kind of cake...more on the dry side.
Midge October 5, 2011
What a lovely memory. I loved marble cake growing up, but I've never made it. Saving it to remedy that soon.
dymnyno October 5, 2011
thanks, It is so easy to make. It tastes even better the next day.
drbabs October 5, 2011
It's going to be perfect for breaking fast on Saturday, i think.
hardlikearmour October 5, 2011
This is gorgeous, and I love the back story. Thanks for sharing this gem!
dymnyno October 5, 2011
Thanks, Regina and her husband, Albert were special neighbors. Her children were the same ages as my brother and me, and although my mother didn't love cooking, Regina's kitchen (and refrigerator) were always open to us. She not only was a great cook and baker, she made the most wonderful cheeses.
TheWimpyVegetarian October 5, 2011
This looks like a perfect cake to have around to sneak slices from! And I love your headnote story...
dymnyno October 5, 2011
Thanks! This story is sweet, but her stories of Hitler's Germany were horrific. She told her history to my mother who wrote them down and that is how I learned about how she cam to the US.
dymnyno October 4, 2011
thanks for catching my mistake! The cocoa powder I used is Scharffen Berger. Ghiradelli is probably what my mother and Regina used back in the day.
drbabs October 4, 2011
Thanks. You know, I can easily find Ghirardelli, but not Scharffen Berger. I really can't wait to make this. My mother used to make a similar cake from a mix.
drbabs October 4, 2011
yum. flour? none in the ingredients list. what kind of chocolate? (I want to make this. My co-workers will love it.)