If my mum was not making any marble or butter cake that month, we would usually get her to buy pre-packed slices from the local bakery or the "roti-man".
When we were kids, an Indian man would ply our neighbourhood streets with a motorcycle (or sometimes they could be on a bicyle) selling bread and all sorts of snacks hanging on the back of a box and also on the handle bars of his two-wheeler. It really seemed like a circus balancing feat for the rider, with so many packs of bread and snacks on his motorcycle. The vendor had all sorts of local breads, cakes, local snacks like peanuts and crackers and sweets. One favourite goodie of mine would be the cream bun and of course my other, marble cake slices. Sadly the "roti-man" is now practically extinct in the cities. You could however still find them selling their bread in this manner in the villages but even then, it is a rarity.
Recipe Adapted from BBC Good Food
225g unsalted butter, softened
185g caster sugar (reduced from original recipe of 225g)
225g self-raising flour, sifted
3 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 tsp pink food colouring (or colour of your choice)
1/2 tsp strawberry emulco (or essence of your choice)
1) Heat oven to 180C. Grease a 20cm cake tin and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2) Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
3) Add the vanilla extract and milk, mix well.
4) Gently fold in the sifted flour and salt in 2 to 3 additions.
5) Divide the mixture between 2 bowls. Sift the cocoa powder into the mixture in one of the bowls. In the other bowl, add the food colouring and essence. (You can leave the 2nd batter plain if you want to)
6) Take 2 spoons and use them to dollop the chocolate and pink cake mixes into the tin alternately. When all the mixture has been used up, tap the bottom on your work surface to ensure that there aren't any air bubbles. Take a skewer and swirl it around the mixture in the tin a few times to create a marbled effect.
7) Bake the cake for 45-55 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool before unmolding.