In hindsight, posting this black forest cake recipe would have been more fitting last week, to mark Village Feasts first birthday. Regardless, I’m of the opinion that there’s never a bad time to make and enjoy cake.
Typically, a cake such as this requires maximum effort, however this cheaters version made with instant chocolate sponge cake and canned cherries is super quick and easy. There’s no pitting and stewing cherries, no melting chocolate and no lengthy beating to make the perfect sponge cake. It tastes heavenly and is a real show stopper, perfect for when you want to make a grand entrance.
In fact, if you have a special party coming up, order a large chocolate sponge slab in advance from your local bakery and create the cake at home. It’s so much better than the cheap store bought versions, you just can’t beat freshly whipped.
1 packet instant chocolate sponge cake (or store bought plain chocolate sponge cake)
1 x 425g can black pitted cherries in syrup, cherries drained, syrup reserved
75ml kirsch or cherry brandy
300ml thickened cream
1-2 tablespoons icing sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (optional)
1 x 30g Flake chocolate bar (or replace with 30g milk or dark chocolate, shaved)
150g fresh cherries
1) Bake 23cm chocolate sponge cake according to packet directions and allow to cool, or purchase a store made plain chocolate sponge cake.
2) In a small bowl combine the kirsch and reserved cherry syrup, set aside.
3) Whisk cream, icing sugar and vanilla bean paste (if using) until soft peaks form (3-5 minutes), refrigerate until required.
4) Using a serrated bread knife halve the cake horizontally. Drizzle each half with the kirsch and cherry syrup to moisten. Place the bottom half on a serving plate and spread over half the whipped cream. Arrange the pitted cherries over the cream and top with the upper half of the cake. Spread the remaining cream on top, gently crush the flake chocolate bar and sprinkle over the cake. Top with whole fresh stemmed cherries. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours (preferably 6 hours) then serve.
- Ask your local cake shop to make a plain chocolate sponge cake in advance.
- If you are serving this cake to children leave out the kirsch or boil it to remove the alcohol and then add to the cherry syrup.
- If you are making this cake during winter use glace cherries to decorate if fresh are not available.