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February 3, 2014 / mintcustard

A cake for Sochi.

The Winter Olympics are about to begin. I love sports of all kinds and I’m getting excited about the events that I’ll be watching. I’m feeling very conflicted too. The Sportsmen and women have been working tirelessly for the last four years at least to be in peak condition. They want to win and do their best however I have a doubt in the back of my mind. Should I be sitting down to enjoy the games? Am I being duped by the shiny, glossy PR machine into thinking one way, when in the background something sinister is afoot. I’m not political with a capital P but I can’t abide discrimination or unfairness of any kind. The whole persecution of the LBGT community in Russia horrifies me. It worries me that the situation is reminiscent of  times when other minorities were persecuted and many stood by.

A slice of Sochi cake

A slice of Sochi cake

As Martin Luther King so eloquently said, ” We should never forget that everything Adolf Hitler did in Germany was “legal” and everything the Hungarian freedom fighters did in Hungary was “illegal.” It was “illegal” to aid and comfort a Jew in Hitler’s Germany. Even so, I am sure that, had I lived in Germany at the time, I would have aided and comforted my Jewish brothers.”

There are times when you think well I’m only one person what can I do about it?

Well, what I do is bake. If I can bake a cake that people might just make, they could share this cake with friends and use it to to talk about the issues that others face in Russia on a daily basis we could  perhaps start a dialogue and at the very least open people’s eyes to the problem.  I had set out to try and create a Rainbow Zebra cake.  As I’d never even made a two colour Zebra cake before, I think I was trying to run before I could walk. I ended up making a rainbow marble cake. If you are a better baker than me then you can use this recipe to make the cake I failed to produce! As this cake uses oil rather than butter it is very moist and needs to be eaten up fairly quickly so put the kettle on and  get your friends round.

A cake for Sochi

A cake for Sochi

A cake for Sochi

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups self raising flour plus 3 tbsp flour.
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • gel colours, red, yellow, green, blue, orange, violet (grape)

sochi cake 1

) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and line  a 9″ round baking tin

2) In a bowl  whisk the sugar and eggs until  pale and frothy. Stir in the oil, milk and vanilla until well combined.

3) In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk to remove any lumps. Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients. Combine on medium speed 1-2 minutes or until the batter is smooth and lump free.

sochi cake 2

4) Divide the mixture into six equal parts. I found the mixture divided up into about 6 US cup measures. Colour each bowl a different colour. Go easy to begin with, you can add more but taking colour out is impossible. Gel colours darken on standing I find and are more vibrant when the cake mix is cooked too.

5) Put the coloured batter into six separate piping bags. Pipe the mixture into the prepared tin. Release your inner Jackson Pollock as you do so. If you want to attempt a zebra cake then I suggest you research this by following the link.


sochi cake 3

6) Bake the cake in the centre of the preheated oven for 35-45 minutes, or until the cake is lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool the cake in the tin for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.  Ice with glace icing made with lemon juice. Make enough to cover the top of the cake fairly thickly to represent the snow on the mountains of Russia.

Put the kettle on, get your friends round for the opening ceremony and start asking some tricky questions.

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