Black Forest Cake

Ingredients

Cake - generously serves 16

250 g Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour

50 g Cocoa

270 g Caster sugar

2 tsp Baking powder

1/2 tsp Salt

5 Eggs

2 Egg whites

10 g Vanilla extract

100 g Oil (I use Rice bran oil)

1 tsp Cream of tartar

150 g Cherry juice

 

Filling

2 x 670 g Bottles of Morello pitted cherries (juice & cherries)

100 g Caster sugar

1 Vanilla bean

25 g Maize starch

120 - 200 g Kirsch (traditional)

2 x 600 ml Thickened cream*

Dark chocolate shavings

 

Kirsch - Traditionally Kirsch is used in a Black Forest Cake, I couldn't find any at our local store & used Chambord vodka instead. Vary the amount of alcohol used according to your taste & the liqueur used.

This amount of cream should be sufficient to coat the outside of the cake.   

 

Method

Filling

Drain the cherries retaining the juice. 150 g of cherry juice will be used for the cake & the remainder (hopefully more than 430 g) will be used for the filling.

Put cherries in a container & pour the alcohol over the top. Put the lid on the container & set aside. Agitate the cherries every now & then. 

Put 100 g sugar, 430 g (or more) cherry juice and 1 split vanilla bean in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar.

When the sugar has dissolved increase the heat & boil for ~12 mins. Take the saucepan off the heat.

Mix the maize starch with a little water to make a slurry.

Put the cherry syrup back on the heat, add the maize starch slurry & stir to thicken the syrup. Take the syrup off the heat when the mixture starts to boil.

Cake

If you keep your eggs in the fridge 1/2 fill the kitchen sink with hot tap water. Put the eggs in the hot tap water for 10 mins. If you keep your eggs at room temperature warm the eggs up by placing them in a dish of warm water (slightly hotter than 37 C).

Turn oven on to 175 C (fan forced).

Grease two 20 cm cake tins & line the bottom with baking paper. The cake will shrink a little as it cools. 

Mix together the Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour, cocoa, baking powder & salt.

The yolks & whites will be whisked/beaten separately; you will need two mixing bowls.  

Measure out 170 g of sugar into the mixing bowl for the yolks. Put the remaining sugar into the bowl/container (not plastic) for the whites. 

Put 1 whole egg & 4 yolks in with the 170 g of sugar, add in the vanilla & beat mixture for ~8 mins. The mixture should be thick & creamy. Mix in the cherry juice & oil.

Whisk the egg whites with the cream of tartar & remaining 100 g of sugar until stiff.

Gently mix the dry ingredients into the yolk mixture. 

Fold the egg whites into the yolk mixture. To fold put a spatula/scrapper into the centre of the bowl & push it down through the mix until it reaches the bottom of the bowl. Bring the spatula toward you all the time scrapping the bottom of the bowl. When the spatula is at the edge of the bowl bring it up out of the mix & with a twist of your hand (90 - 180 degree clockwise turn if right handed) turn the spatula over. The mix that was on top of the spatula will now fall back into the middle of the mix. Rotate the bowl clockwise with your left hand while repeating the spatula movement. Ensure the mix has a uniform consistency before proceeding.

Transfer the cake batter to the two cake tins. Avoid putting the mix on the sides of the tin.

Put the tins in the oven & bake at 175 C for approximately 20 - 25 mins. The time required will depend on your oven. The cakes are ready when the cakes start to leave the sides of the tin. Another check is to gently press the centre of the cake, if there is no resistance the cake needs longer. 

Before the cakes come out of the oven put baking paper on two cooling racks. Bring the cakes out of the oven & allow to cool for ~5 mins before turning the cakes on to the baking paper. The bottom of the cake should be facing up. Leave to cool completely. 

Assembling the cake

Whip the cream. 

Drain the cherries and add the liqueur to the cherry syrup.

Cut the cakes in half (horizontally). Put the bottom half of one cake on to a serving plate. Brush with 1/3 of the liqueur cherry syrup. I usually lay out the halves of the cakes & put the syrup on all of them at the same time.

Reserve 16 cherries for the top of the cake. Arrange ~1/3 of the cherries on the bottom layer of the cake.

On top of the cherries put ~1/6 of the cream.

Place another half of cake on top of the cream layer, repeat the brushing with syrup, arranging cherries & topping with cream.

Cover the top layer & sides of the cake (optional) with cream. Place the reserved cherries around the cake on top of the cream. Top with shaved chocolate shards.

Refrigerate for at least ~2 hours prior to serving. Leaving it for at least 2 hours gives the syrup time to soak into the cake.

Enjoy!