Marble cake

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Marble cake
Place of originAustria, Germany
Main ingredientsLight and dark batter

A marble cake is a cake with a streaked or mottled appearance (like marble) achieved by very lightly blending light and dark batter.[1] It can be a mixture of vanilla and chocolate cake, in which case it is mainly vanilla, with streaks of chocolate. Other possibilities are strawberry or other fruit flavors, or (particularly in marbled coffee cakes) cinnamon or other spices.

Slices of marble cake

One of the first print references to marble cake appears in Malinda Russell's "Domestic Cook Book" (1866).[2] One popular variation of this recipe during Victorian times was “Harlequin cake,”[1] which was baked with checkerboard patterns. Early recipes used molasses and spices to achieve the dark-colored batter.[3]

World records[edit]

The world's largest marble cake is a 600-square-foot (56 m2) marble cake made for an episode of comedy series Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, featuring an image of Turkmenistan's authoritarian president Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov falling off a horse during a horse race he participated in. It was submitted to Guinness World Records for the category of "largest cake with an image of someone falling off a horse", but was denied.[4][5][6] Oliver insisted on his show that this was because Guinness asked them to sign a non-disparagement agreement, but Guinness later claimed the record was denied due to a policy against records which belittle other record-holders or subject them to ridicule. Guinness also pointed out that Oliver had not specifically requested the record for the largest marble cake.[7] The Guinness World Record for the largest marble cake is a 160-square-foot (15 m2) cake, awarded to Betty Crocker in Saudi Arabia.[8]


  1. ^ a b Olver, Lynne (23 January 2015). "Marble cake". The Food Timeline. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
  2. ^ Domestic Cook Book, Mrs Malinda Russell, 1866, p.8
  3. ^ Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America, Andrew F. Smith editor (Oxford University Press: New York) 2004 [2007], Volume 1 (p. 162)[ISBN missing]
  4. ^ "John Oliver Bakes Very Large Cake to Annoy Turkmenistan". Time. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  5. ^ "John Oliver's Turkmenistan segment takes a turn with a very massive cake". Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  6. ^ "John Oliver batters Guinness World Records' cozy relationship with stunt-happy dictators". News. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  7. ^ "Guinness World Records on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver". GuinnessWorldRecords. GuinnessWorldRecords. 11 August 2019. Archived from the original on 6 April 2020. Retrieved 20 August 2020.
  8. ^ "Largest marble cake". GuinnessWorldRecords. GuinnessWorldRecords. Archived from the original on 22 May 2020. Retrieved 20 August 2020.

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