So my brother has been asking for a black forest cake for his birthday for years, and this year I finally got around to making him one. The original recipe suggests using sour Morello cherries cherries (apparently you can find them in more specialty stores such as Whole Foods). Unfortunately, I did not have time to get to Whole Foods and had to settle for Save On Foods and Bing cherries. I found the Bing cherries to be an acceptable substitution, but next time I am going to try it with the Morello cherries.
When you are making this cake, ensure that you follow the suggested time for mixing the batter. As you may have noticed in the ingredients there is no baking soda or baking powder. This means that whether or not your cake rises is depending on how much air is incorporated into the batter. If you under mix the cake the result will still taste delicious, but it will be flat and you won’t be able to cut it in half. The batter should become lighter in colour as it thickens.
Overall this cake was moist, chocolatey, and delicious. It might look like a bit of work, but it is worth it for a special occasion!
Black Forest Cake
24 ounce (700 ml) jar of Morello Cherries in syrup
4 tbsp Kirsch or Cherry Brandy
3 tbsp hot melted unsalted butter
1/2 cup white flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup unsweetened regular or Dutch-processed cocoa powder
4 large eggs
2/3 cup granulated white sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Whipped Cream Frosting
2 1/2 cups whipping cream
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp granulated white sugar
- Drain the cherries, reserving 1 cup of the liquid. Place the cherries in a bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons Kirsch. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside.
- Add 2 tbsps of the Kirsch to the reserved cherry syrup.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a non stick spray, a 9 inch round cake pan and line the bottom of pan with parchment or wax paper.
- In a bowl, sift the flour, salt and cocoa powder.
- In a heatproof bowl whisk the eggs with the sugar. Place over a saucepan of simmering water, and whisking constantly, heat until lukewarm. Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl of your electric mixer.
- Beat on high speed until the mixture is thick (about 5 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract. Then sift about one-third of the flour mixture over the egg mixture and gently fold in using a rubber spatula or whisk. Sift and fold in another third, and then fold in the rest. Take 1 cup of the batter and fold it into the melted butter (to lighten it). Then gently fold it into the egg batter.
- Pour into your pan, smoothing the top. Bake for about 20 – 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a metal rack before removing from pan.
Whipped Cream Frosting:
- In your mixing bowl place the whipping cream, vanilla extract, and sugar and stir to combine. Cover and chill the bowl and wire whisk in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, then beat the mixture just until stiff peaks form.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the genoise, horizontally, into two layers. Turn over the top layer of the cake (top of cake becomes bottom) and place on your serving plate.
- Brush the cake layer with 1/4 cup cherry syrup. Take 1 cup of whipped cream and spread on the moistened genoise. Place the cherries evenly over the cream. Brush the cut-side of second genoise layer with 1/2 cup syrup.
- Place cut-side down on top of the cherries, gently pressing to compact. Spread the remaining cream over top and sides of cake.
- Cover and refrigerate the cake for several hours (or overnight) before serving. Decorate with fresh cherries and shaved chocolate.