People who have followed this blog right from the beginning would know the original intend of this blog was never to be a food blog. I wanted it to be a journal to record my mommy memories and following that, sharpen my writing skills. But somewhere in between I started baking and that influenced me so much that slowly and steadily I started chronicling my baking adventures and at times, misadventures as well. I guess, everything has to evolve and my blog did too. The content might have changed from diaper stories to Dorie recipes but the passion for writing prevailed.
During the course of my 1.5 years of blogging, I also happened to join the Bahrain Writers’ Circle that aimed at getting fellow writers and authors come together once a month to talk informally about writing and related topics. It has been great for me, a home maker, to venture out once a month to meet like-minded and inspiring bunch of writers. An offshoot of this circle is the Creative Writing Workshop that is the brain child of the beautiful Ana Corradini Boreland. Ana is from Brazil and came to Bahrain with her husband. She is a journalist, translator and an author of 14 children’s books. A live wire, Ana brought such energy to her Writing Workshops that we were forced to come out with our creative best. She spent hours building wonderful writing exercises for us that manipulated us to push our writing boundaries. The truth be told, I feel a difference when I write now and try not to be as uni dimensional, like I used to be once. I try to gauge a topic from all corners and then attempt to bring out the best ( in my opinion) that I possibly can. These workshops by Ana instilled in me a confidence and the courage to stop being so self-critical. Not in many words, her message was – ‘Unless you put yourself out there, there is no way you are going to know how well you can do something‘ and “Unapologetic-ally be Yourself“. Her workshops were fun, informal and such a source of joy that I looked forward to them from days on end. But I had an inkling that it was just too good to last and soon we heard some bitter-sweet news from her about moving away from Bahrain. To say, that I was heart-broken, would be an understatement and due to unavoidable circumstances I wasn’t able to attend her last workshop. But I wanted to tell her how much her time, effort and energy meant to me and as a going away gift I baked her the classic Marbled Loaf Cake.
Thank you Ana for every laugh, every word of encouragement and for simply being you.
Recipe for Dorie’s Marbled Loaf Cake
2 cups plus 2 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
1 ¼ tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Salt
1 ½ sticks (10 ounces) Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
1 cup Sugar
4 large Eggs
½ tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
1/2 cup whole milk
4 ounces Bittersweet Chocolate, melted and cooled
1/2 cup of Chocolate chips – milk & semi sweet for topping
1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter an 9×5 loaf pan, dust the inside with flour, and tap out the excess. Place the pan on an insulated baking sheet.
2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
3. Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth, about three minutes. Add the sugar and beat for another two to three minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Don’t be concerned if the batter curdles and stays curdled. Beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and alternately add the flour mixture in three additions and the milk in two (begin and end with dry ingredients), mixing only until each addition is incorporated.
4. Divide the batter in half and stir four ounces bittersweet chocolate into one half and keep the other half plain. Scrape the batter into the pan. Top it with chocolate chips.
5. Bake the cake for 1 hour and 20 to 30 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted deep into the center comes out clean. If the cake looks as if it’s getting too brown during its bake, cover it loosely with a foil tent. Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and let it rest for about 15 minutes before unmolding, then cool the cake to room temperature right side up on the rack.
6. Wrapped well, the cake will keep at room temperature for up to four days.
Ana, I hope you enjoyed the Marbled loaf cake and here’s wishing you all my best!