Chocolate Orange Battenberg Cake

SERVES 10-12

PREPARATION TIME: 45 MINUTES

COOKING TIME: 23-25 MINUTES

Chocolate and orange flavours taste terrific in this variation of a classic favourite. It’s made in the Tala Battenberg Tin, with its clever dividers to make four even strips of cake, which are then assembled into a chequerboard pattern and covered with orange-flavoured marzipan.

Made with the Tala Silver Anodised Aluminium Battenberg Tin.

Ingredients

For the sponges

  • 125g butter, at room temperature, plus a little extra for greasing
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp milk
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 3-4 drops orange food colouring(or use 2-3 yellow and 1 red)
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder, blended with 2 tbsp hot water

To decorate

  • 100g shredless marmalade or apricot jam
  • Icing sugar, for dusting
  • 400g yellow marzipan
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 3-4 drops orange food colouring (or use 2 yellow and 1-2 red)
  • Cocoa powder, for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Grease the Tala Battenberg Tin with butter, then line each section with strips of baking parchment, firmly creased so they fit neatly. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/Gas 4.
  2. Beat the butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl using a handheld electric mixer or wooden spoon, until light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, beating well between each addition. Stir in the vanilla extract. Sift in the flour and salt, folding in gently with a large metal spoon. Stir in the milk.
  3. Divide the mixture equally into two separate bowls by weighing them accurately. Stir the orange zest and food colouring into one portion, mixing thoroughly to give an even colour. Stir the chocolate mixture into the second portion.
  4. Share the orange mixture equally between two sections of the prepared tin, levelling the surface smoothly and making sure that it goes into the corners. Share the chocolate mixture between the remaining two sections in the same way.
  5. Bake for 23-25 minutes, until risen and firm. Cool on a wire rack until barely warm, then carefully remove the sponges by easing out the dividers. Peel away the lining parchment carefully and leave until completely cold.
  6. Trim the sponges with a sharp serrated knife (a bread knife is ideal) so that they are all the same size. Warm the marmalade or apricot jam with 1 tbsp water, then pass it through a sieve to make sure that it’s smooth. Assemble the cakes into a chequerboard pattern, brushing the surfaces that meet with marmalade or jam.
  7. Sprinkle a spotlessly clean work surface with icing sugar. Knead the marzipan for a few moments until pliable, then add the orange zest and colouring to it, working it in (don’t worry if it has a marbled effect). Roll out into a neat rectangle measuring 20 x 30cm, trimming the edges with a sharp knife to be as accurate as possible.
  8. Brush the surface of the marzipan with marmalade or jam (re-warmed if necessary). Set the cake on top, in the middle of the marzipan. Wrap the marzipan around the cake carefully, pressing gently as you go, sealing the join together along the top and leaving the chequerboard ends free.
  9. Smooth the marzipan with your hands to neaten it up, trim if needed, then pinch the top to crimp it. Sprinkle with a little cocoa powder, then serve.