Black Forest Gateau

 

Ingredients for the Sponge

6oz/170g unsalted butter, softened, not melted

6oz /170g caster sugar

4oz/115g self-raising flour or plain flour with a teaspoon of baking powder

3 large eggs

2oz/ 55g cocoa powder, not drinking chocolate

pinch of salt

For the cherry filling:

1 large glass of black or morello cherries. Cornflour to thicken juice

Kirschwasser & sugar to taste

 

For the cream covering:

1 ltr well cooled whipping cream.

Chocolate decorations to alternate with the reserved cherries.

 

Method

 

Preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan or gas mark 5. Grease and line a 26cm sandwich / cake tin.

Put the butter and sugar into a bowl and mix until creamy and lighter in colour, using a spoon, hand held mixer or free-standing mixer.

Sieve the cocoa, flour and salt into a bowl and crack one of the eggs into a cup or ramekin. Stirring all the time, add the egg and a third of the flour mixture into the sugar and butter, add the second egg and third of the flour and add the last egg and flour mixture in to the butter and sugar. You should have a smooth thick batter. If your batter is stiff, add a splash of milk and stir.

Put even amounts of the mixture into the tin and spread using a knife. Put into the oven and bake for about 35 minutes until springy to touch. Take out of the oven at leave it in its tin for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Whilst the sponge is cooling separate the cherries from their juice and remove 9 cherries from the fruit. Place these on kitchen paper to drain. Using a little of the juice, mix with a little of the cornflour and reserve for thickening the juice.

Place the remaining juice and cherries in a saucepan and heat. When this is boiling add the cornflour mix and cook through thoroughly. Add sugar and a little Kirschwasser to taste. Stir and then leave to cool so that its nicely thick.

Using a large knife, slice the sponge into 3 layers. Using the first layer sprinkle Kirschwasser to flavour the sponge, then cover with the thickened cherries making sure that the mixture doesn‘t run over the edges.

 

Place the second layer of sponge on top of the layer of cherries and sprinkle with more Kirschwasser. This is then topped with a good layer of thickly whipped cream.

The third layer is then placed on top and the whole cake is to be covered with a layer of cream. The sides of the cake can be covered with grated chocolate and the top is to be divided ( either using a cake divider or a knife ) and decorated with cream rosettes on each piece.

Use the cherries, that you saved earlier, to top the rosettes of cream on each piece. Alternate the cherries with the chocolate decorations. Place a cherry on a rosette piped onto the middle of the cake.

Cool the Gateau in the fridge for at least 2 hours.