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Schwarzwdlder Kirschtorte
Yield: 12 Servings

8 oz bittersweet chocolate
1 c boiling water
8 large eggs
1 ts vanilla extract
1 c superfine (caster) sugar
1 1/2 c sifted cake flour

2 1-lb cans morello cherries (or red sour cherries)
3/4 c superfine (caster) sugar
1 c cherry liquid
1/2 c Kirsch

2 c confectioner's (icing) sugar
2/3 c unsalted butter
2 egg yolks
1/4 c Kirsch

9 oz semisweet chocolate
3/4 c superfine (caster) sugar
3 tb water
3 egg yolks
1 c unsalted butter, softened
2 tb vegetable shortening (opt.)

1 c heavy cream
2 tb superfine (caster) sugar
1/2 ts vanilla extract
1/2 ts Kirsch

12 maraschino cheries w/stems
1/3 c Kirsch
1 bar semisweet chocolate

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare two 9-inch by 2-inch pans (or two 9-inch springform pans),
greased, bottoms lined with parchment, and then greased again and
floured. In a heavy saucepan bring the chocolate and water to a
boil over low heat, stirring constantly. Simmer, stirring, for 5
minutes or until the chocolate thickens to a pudding-like consistency.
(It will fall from the spoon and pool slightly before disappearing.)
Cool completely. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, vanilla
extract and sugar with the whisk beater on high speed for 10 minutes
or until triple in volume. (A hand beater may be used but it will
be necessary to beat for at least 20 minutes.)

Sift + the flour over the egg mixture and fold it in gently but
rapidly with a slotted skimmer or large rubber spatula until some
of the flour has disappeared. Repeat with the remaining flour
until all flour has disappeared. Fold in the chocolate mixture
until incorporated. Pour immediately into the prepared pans (they
will be about 2/3 full) and bake 30 to 35 minutes or until a tester
inserted in the centers enters as easily as it does when inserted
closer to the sides.

The cakes rise to the tops of the pans during baking and will lower
slightly when done, pulling slightly away from the sides. Avoid
opening the oven door before the minimum time or the cakes could
fall. Loosen the sides of the cakes with a small metal spatula
and unmold at once onto lightly greased racks. Reinvert to cool.
The firm upper crusts prevent falling. Trim the bottom and top
crusts and split each layer in half horizontally to make (4) +"
layers, when ready to complete the cake.

Drain the cherries for 30 minutes, reserving 1 cup cherry liquid.
In a medium saucepan combine the cherry liquid and sugar and bring
to a boil, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Boil briskly,
uncovered, for 5 minutes. Add the cherries and simmer, covered,
1 minute. Remove from the heat. Transfer the cherries with a
slotted spoon to a jar with tight-fitting lid and add the Kirsch.
Boil the remaining syrup until reduced to 2/3 cup and pour over
the cherries. Cover tightly and swirl to mix. Cool completely
and refrigerate until ready to complete cake. *Note: May be
prepared well in advance and stored.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the confectioner's sugar and butter
with the whisk beater on low speed until well-blended. Add egg
yolks, beating on high speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until light and
fluffy. Gently fold in Kirsch.

Chop the chocolate into small bits and put in a large mixing bowl.
Bring the sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan, and boil
for 1 minute. Pour the boiling sugar mixture over the chocolate
and stir until smooth. If the mixture becomes granular and begins
to stiffen, beat in 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening to smooth
it out. Cover and set aside to cool to room temperature.

In another mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the whisk beater
until well blended. Add the cooled chocolate mixture and beat
well. Continue to beat on high speed, adding small bits of butter
(about 2 tablespoons) at a time, and beating well until all the
butter is incorporated and the frosting is light and fluffy.

Whip cream in a small chilled mixing bowl until frothy. Add sugar,
vanilla and Kirsch. Continue beating until very stiff (almost to

Macerate maraschino cherries in Kirsch for at least 24 hours prior
to assembling cake. Warm chocolate bar to approximately 80' F.,
or just warm enough to prevent splintering. Form chocolate curls
by using a potato peeler drawn against the length of the bar.
Chill until ready to complete cake.

Drain cherries, reserving syrup. There should be about 1 cup, 2
tablespoons of syrup. Add additional Kirsch, if necessary. Transfer
the cakes to a long strip of waxed paper and prick each layer
lightly in several places with the tines of a long fork. Sprinkle
the layers evenly with the syrup and let them rest for at least 5
minutes. Cut out a cardboard round to fit the diameter of the cake
layer. Place bottom layer on cardboard and spread with 1/3 of the
filling. Distribute an even layer of cherries (so that they are
touching) on top of filling. Place 2nd and 3rd cake layers,
repeating with layers of filling and cherries. Top with 4th cake
layer. Wrap cake gently in plastic film and refrigerate for at
least 1 hour for filling to become firm.

Remove cake from refrigerator and discard plastic film. Frost
sides only with chocolate buttercream, using an icing comb to finish
and decorate the sides. Pile the entire amount of cream topping on
top of cake. Use an icing comb or swirl decoratively into an even
layer. Place 12 maraschino cherries evenly spaced around perimeter
of top and pile chocolate curls decoratively in center. Cover cake
closely and refrigerate at least 24 hours (48 hours is better), to
allow moisture to equalize and flavors to mellow. Serve chilled.


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