Pretty please with cherries on top….
These days I get so overwhelmed with the amount of food choices available to me that sometimes, favourite dishes get pushed to one side and I don’t end up eating them again for a number of years. First world problems, right? Well, something that falls into the ‘neglected favourites’ category is Black forest cake. Oh my, do I love Black forest cake! I can’t really remember the last time I ate Black forest cake, which kind of gives you an indication of how long it’s been since I’ve had a slice. I’ve learnt that Black forest cake is an acquired taste; not everyone gets tickled pink by it. I suppose that’s why I haven’t really thought about making it before. It’s not that often that you hear someone profess their love for Black forest cake…unless you’re me of course! So, I’m doing the usual flick through of the new Australian Good Taste magazine and I come across a recipe for a Black forest torte. It looked amazing! There were three things in this recipe that made it a stand-out recipe for me:
- The addition of chocolate to the whipped cream in between the layers of cake.
- The addition of chocolate ganache for the topping.
- And the use of morello cherries instead of maraschino cherries.
The idea of combining an immense amount of chocolate (almost 500g!!!!) with some sour cherries in a cake is pure genius! I think those who are dubious about Black forest cake would find this version more palatable, because there is less cream and the cherries aren’t sickly sweet. This recipe makes a monster of a cake, so you could definitely share it between 10-12 people (if you want to share).
Pretty please Black forest torte
670g jar Marco Polo Morello Cherries
¼ cup (60ml) Kirsch (cherry brandy)
200g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
150g milk chocolate, broken into pieces
350ml thickened cream
1 cup (150g) plain flour, sifted
1/3 cup (35g) cocoa powder, sifted
1 cup (215g) caster sugar
60g butter, melted
120g dark chocolate, extra, broken into pieces
Pinch of table salt
½ cup (125ml) thickened cream
Chocolate shavings, to decorate
Drain cherries, reserving 1/3 cup (80ml) syrup. Combine the syrup and Kirsch in a bowl and set aside. Place the combined chocolate and thickened cream in a microwave-safe bowl. Cook on medium in the microwave, stirring every minute for 2-3 minutes until smooth. Chuck in the fridge, stirring halfway, for an hour or until thick. Use an electric beater to beat the chocolate mixture until thick and spreadable.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180°C (fan forced). Line a 26cm (base measurement) springform cake pan with baking paper. Place flour and cocoa powder in a bowl. Place eggs and caster sugar in a separate bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Whisk for 4 minutes or until warm. Remove from heat. Use an electric beater on medium speed to beat for 5 minutes or until a ribbon trail forms when you lift the beater up. Fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture until just combined. Fold in the melted butter. Pour cake batter into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until the sponge springs back when touched. Cool the cake completely on a wire rack.
Place the remaining dark chocolate and salt into a bowl. Bring the remaining cream just under boiling point in a saucepan over medium heat. Pour the cream over the chocolate. Whisk ganache until smooth.
Cut cake horizontally into 3 layers. I used my toothpick trick to mark out the layers and act as a guide for my knife when cutting the layers. Place the bottom layer onto a cake stand or plate. Drizzle with 1/3 of the syrup mixture, then spread over half the cream mixture. Top with 1/3 of the cherries. Continue layering with the remaining cake, syrup mixture and cream mixture, and half of the remaining cherries. You should end up with the top layer of cake left over, which should be placed as the last layer of your cake. Pour over the ganache and set aside to set. Once the ganache is set, top with the remaining cherries and chocolate shavings.
Note: I’ve made a small amendment to the original recipe, so if you would like to see it, click here. The small amendment that I made was to the decoration. I used chocolate shavings instead of curls because I couldn’t be bothered making curls. Also, it’s so much easier to shave chocolate using a veggie peeler, plus it’s safer than using a knife!