I wanted to create a Black Forest Gateau that is a million miles away from the frozen variety that I remember my mum buying in the 1970's!
Line the base and the sides of a 20cm round cake tin (at least 7.5cm deep). I use cake tin liners from Lakeland
Preheat the oven to 160C/GM3
Break the chocolate into pieces into a large saucepan. Cube the butter and add to the pan
Mix the coffee granules with 125ml cold water and add this to the chocolate and butter
Heat very gently until everything is melted. Don’t have the heat up too high as this burns the coffee and it will taste awful! Mix together with a wooden spoon.
Now mix the two flours and bicarbonate of soda together and sieve into a large bowl
Add the sugars and the cocoa. Stir everything together making sure there are no large lumps of cocoa or sugar
Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and mix in the buttermilk
Pour the melted chocolate mixture and the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir well until everything is well blended. You will have a runny, batter like mixture
Pour into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for approx 1 hour and 30 minutes, depending on your oven. You may need to cover the cake for the last 20 minutes as it may start to burn. It is cooked when a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. The top will crack a little but not to worry.
Leave in the tin for about 10 minutes to cool and then turn out onto a wire rack to get cold completely
Once the cake is completely cold you need to slice it into 3 layers. I use my trusty cake leveller.
You can, if you wish sprinkle the bottom and the middle layer with some alcohol. The traditional way is to use Kirsch but I used some Peach Schnapps in the pictured cake.
Now whip the cream in a large bowl until it is soft peaks. Don’t whip for too long or it will be hard to spread.
Spread over all 3 of the layers, leaving some spare to pipe swirls on the top of the cake.
Now spread the cherry compote over the whipped cream on the bottom 2 cake layers only. You could also add some fresh, stoned cherries if you have enough.
Carefully layer up the cake.
Place the remaining whipped cream into a piping bag and pipe swirls on the top of the cake. Top each of these swirls with a fresh cherry and grate some dark chocolate over the top.
The photo shows the cake decorated with small Easter Eggs 1) because I made it at Easter and 2) I couldn’t get any fresh cherries at the time! You could just as easily decorate it with Christmas themed decorations to make an alternative Christmas Cake or dessert.
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