Black Forest Cake

I am known for two cakes. One is a moist chocolate cake topped with rich and decadent dark chocolate ganache, the other is this creation and one of my personal favorites: Black Forest Cake! Black Forest Cake comes from Southern Germany where it is made with layers of chocolate cake, a middle layer of cherries enriched with kirschwasser, a type of brandy distilled from cherries and topped off with whipped cream. All I can say is that this cake is a favorite of our families’ particularly my dad and so when he turned the big 50 last year, I made this cake for him. It was very delicious and soon enough, I was requested by a family friend who had attended the party, to make this cake for her parent’s anniversary party. Needless to say I was honored, but more than that thrilled that I could make this cake again. My version is little bit different from the traditional German recipe. I use a standard chocolate cake recipe for the cake portion and instead of using maraschino cherries which I find overly sweet and artificial, I use frozen cherries and stew them into a compote along with cognac, another variety of brandy distilled from grapes that also works as a great accompaniment to cherries. The topping is still a delicious vanilla whipped cream that is light, yet still a great binder for this magnificent cake. Anyways, the cake is quite easy to make and this recipe makes a humongous two layer 9X13 cake can feed a crowd!

Recipe: Black Forest Cake

Chocolate Cake Layer

Recipe Adapted from Hershey’s

Makes a two 9X13 layers

  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 3 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Recipe: Cherry Compote

A Cooking Fever  Original Recipe

  • 3 cups of fresh or frozen cherries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cognac

Whipped Cream

  • 1 pint of heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Make the Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees farenheit. Grease two 9X13 inch pans
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment or in a bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, vanilla, and sugar until well incorporated
  3. In another bowl sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.
  4. If using a stand mixer, switch to the paddle attachment and add in the sifted flour mixture in batches. If you’re using a bowl just stir in the dry ingredients to your wet slowly.
  5. Divide the batter evenly into the two pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Make the Compote

  1. In a medium saucepan add the cherries, sugar, and cognac. Bring the mixture to a boil and then simmer for about 10-15 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool

Make the Whipped Cream Topping

  1. In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together the cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla until the mixture forms soft peaks and resembles whipped cream.

Assemble the Cake

  1. Place one of the cake layers on a cakeboard or plate. Spread the cherries evenly over the cake. Reserve some of the liquid for the second layer.
  2. Place the second layer on top of the cherries and the first layer. Sprinkle the reserved cherry juice over the second layer and allow it to soak in.
  3. Spread the whipped cream evenly over the cake. Place in the fridge for about 6 hours to overnight, to let the cake set and the juices soak in.
  4. Serve cold straight from refrigerator.

 

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