Sunday, February 27, 2011

Black Forest Cake

I always have a cluster of birthdays in the first third of the year. Many of my nearest and dearest celebrate their birthday in February, March and April so it is always a busy time. This time it is my brother in law's birthday and he's turning the big three-oh so I thought I'd make him a nice cake to celebrate. 

I remember at my sister's engagement party 5 years ago that they had a rather unusual choice of Black Forest Cake for their engagement cake. I remember my sister saying at the time it was because it is BIL's favourite cake of all time so I thought what better cake to make than his favourite for his departure from his 20's?

I searched the net and found a Margaret Fulton recipe that I chose to re-create. My baking mojo has left me of late (the gluten free Chocolate and Chestnut brownies I recently attempted from Not Quite Nigella absolutely bombed and I had less than an ideal result in the Molleaux au Chocolat I made in my last post) and so I made this with some trepidation for a couple of reasons:
1. It's a 'big' birthday for my beloved BIL and;
2. I have never made this cake before and I will be laying it before him on my first attempt

The recipe seemed reasonably straight forward so I started on Friday night making the cake and prepared the fillings and assembled the cake on Saturday morning just before Mr HLD and I left for the family BBQ. 

Whilst it isn't the prettiest cake you'll see, it was a hit which was evidenced by my BIL sneaking more and more of it during the afternoon! Mission accomplished!

Black Forest Cake

Recipe by Margaret Fulton


For the cake
- 150g dark chocolate 
- 150g butter, softened
- 150g caster sugar
- 6 eggs, separated
- 150g self raising flour, sifted
- pinch of salt

For the cherry filling
- 750g jar of sour cherries
- 2 1/2 tbsp cornflour
- 75g - 100g sugar (depending on how sour the cherries are)
- 30ml liqueur (amaretto, kirsch or cointreau)

For the chocolate ganache
- 375g dark chocolate
- 250ml cream

For the whipped cream
- 250ml cream
- 1 tbsp caster sugar


Chocolate cake

1.  Pre heat oven to 170c
2.  Gently melt the chocolate (either in microwave or over double-boiler)
3.  In a bowl, combine the melted chocolate and butter and beat until creamy
4.  Slowly and gradually beat in the sugar and egg yolks (adding them one at a   

5.   Fold in sifted flour
6.   In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff
7.   Gently fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture
8.   Pour batter into a lined and greased 26cm spring form pan
9.   Bake for 40 - 50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean
10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before cutting into 3 layers 
     horizontally (or 2 layers if your cake is flat like mine)

To make the cherry filling

1.   In a saucepan, mix the cornflour with enough cherry juice to make a paste
2.   Combine the rest of the juice with the cornflour paste and the desired 
      amount of sugar
3.   Cook, stirring until it boils and thickens
4.   Add the cherries and liqueur, remove from heat and allow to cool

Front: Cherry filling
Back: Chocolate Ganache

To make the chocolate ganache

1.   Gently heat the chocolate and cream in a saucepan, stirring constantly until 
      the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth
2.   Do not allow to boil
3.   Pour into a bowl and allow the ganache to cool until it is the right 
      consistency, i.e. thin enough to pour but thick enough to stay on the cake 
      (About room temperature)

For the whipped cream

1.   Pour cream and sugar into a bowl and whip until thick

To assemble the cake

1.   Sprinkle the bottom layer with a little bit more of the liqueur and spread 
      over the ganache

2.   Spread the cherry mixture until it evenly covers the layer
3.   Spread the layer with cream
4.   Repeat with remaining layers and pour over the ganache and allow to set

5.   Pipe cream over the cake and grate some extra chocolate over the top

Serves 8 greedy people! (or 1 BIL)

1 comment:

  1. Sounds delicious - i love black forest! I was thinking about the NQN brownies if i was able to find chestnut flour, but maybe not?