Zebra Birthday Cake

Zebra Birthday Cake

My daughter had her fifth birthday party at the National Zoo, so naturally we had to have an animal themed cake. Since her favorite animals are zebras, this cake was a natural fit.

Although the zebra frosting on top is great, the coolest part of this cake is that the inside of the cake is zebra striped too! A simple vanilla cake batter is layered with chocolate cake batter to make an interwoven vanilla-chocolate cake. When you cut the cake, a vanilla-chocolate "zebra striped" pattern is revealed in each slice. This is the perfect birthday treat for any one that loves zebras and cake as much as my daughter.
  • Prep: 40 min
  • Cook: 40 min
  • Total: 1 hour 20 min
  • Serves 24 to 30
Zebra Birthday Cake
  • Two Hours Before Starting
  • 8 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 ¼ cup whole milk, room temperature
  • Two hours before you plan on making the cake, remove eggs and milk from fridge and let come to room temperature.
  • 1 pound (4 sticks) butter
  • Place butter on a plate and let rise to room temperature to soften.
  • Cake Pan and Oven Prep
  • ¼ cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 9x13 inch cake pan with vegetable shortening. Lightly dust with flour and shake out excess into sink.
  • Batter
  • reserved eggs
  • reserved milk
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. Set aside.
  • 21 ounces (3 cups) sugar
  • 14 ounces (3 ½ cups) cake flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, cake flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • reserved butter
  • Add butter and use a pastry blender to cut the butter into small, pea-sized pieces with the flour.
  • 1 ½ cups of reversed egg-milk-vanilla mixture
  • Add 1 ½ cups of reserved egg-milk-vanilla mixture and mix at lowest speed with a hand mixer until incorporated, 5 to 10 seconds.
  • remaining egg-milk-vanilla-mixture
  • Increase speed to high, add remaining egg mixture, and beat until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  • Stop mixer and thoroughly scrape sides and bottom of bowl. Beat on medium-high until thoroughly combined and batter looks slightly curdled, about 15 seconds longer.
  • Divide the batter in two by pouring half of the batter into a separate bowl.
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup milk
  • Add cocoa powder and milk to one of the bowls containing half of the batter. Beat until combined to create a chocolate batter.
  • Assembly and Baking
  • To create a striped pattern on the inside of the cake, we'll pour a small amount of the vanilla batter onto the cake pan, pour a small amount of chocolate on top of that, and keep repeating this pattern until we've poured all of the batter in. You can view pictures of this process on MyCakeSchool.com.
  • Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, take ¼ cup of vanilla batter and pour in a small mound on one side of the 9x13 pan. Take another ¼ cup of the vanilla batter and pour it on the center of the other side of the pan. Pour ¼ of chocolate batter on top of each of the vanilla batter. Repeat this alternating vanilla-chocolate pattern until all of the batter has been poured into the pan.
  • Bake at 350°F until edges of cake turn golden and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 35 to 40 minutes.
  • Remove pan from oven and cool on rack for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of the pan to loosen. Invert cake onto a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before icing.
  • Decorating
  • 30 ounces white frosting
  • Divide frosting in half. Leave one half white and color the other half with black food coloring.
  • Using a disposable decorating bag with a striped cake decorating tip, carefully frost cake. I would recommend getting a picture of a zebra or something zebra print on it to use as a reference to create a zebra-like pattern on the cake.
  • Slice and serve with vanilla ice cream.
From MakeBetterFood.com. . (http://makebetterfood.com/recipes/zebra-birthday-cake/).
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