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Black Forest Cake

They said there is always a first time for everything and this time is the first time I am baking a black forest cake.   To tell you the truth I don't like black forest cake.  The ones that I had had to much icing, too much cherry filling.  I actually don't like cherries.  But I decided to give it another try.  Maybe the ones that I had are not the best black forest cake.  I simply don't know.  So I googled black forest cake recipes.  The website "Joy of Baking" is an excellent source for all baked goods.  According to "Joy of Baking" website black forest cake thought to originate from Germany and the originator was inspired by "the Black Forest of Germany".  The chocolate cake is a spongy type of cake called Genoise.  Genoise is used because it readily absorbs soaking syrup.  In this case Kirsh (cherry brandy) is added into the soaking syrup so that the cherry flavour will show through the cake and the cherry filling.  The cake is suppose to have a chocolate covered cherry flavour to it.  Yum!  I wanted the cake to be kid friendly so I substituted 1/4 cup Kirsh with 1 tablespoon almond extract (see Hershey website).  To tie everything together I added almond extract to the whipped cream frosting.
Black Forest engagement cake with cherry flowers

Vanilla cupcake with fresh whipped cream topped with
chocolate shavings and marachino cherries.

Made a practice black forest cake a week prior to baking the real deal.  In my first try the cake did not rise as much.  It was spongy but it seems like I did not introduce enough air into the batter.  The recipe calls for beating the egg and sugar mixture for 10 minutes.  I recall only beating the egg half the time.   I ended up with a little more than 1/2 of an thick cake layers.  Lesson learned.  So the second time around I was more patient and whipped the eggs for 10 minutes.  I got thicker and spongier cake layers!  WOoHoo!  Whipped eggs are the only leavening agent in Genoise cake.  It is important to get the egg and sugar as light and fluffy as possible and at the same time care is needed to prevent batter deflation (read more in Joy of Baking's black forest cake post).

Practice makes better.  Used vanilla extract to flavour the whipped cream
frosting, maraschino cherry syrup as soaking syrup.  Found that almond
extract enhances the cherry's flavour.  Next time I will definitely add
Kirsh in soaking syrup.

Bronze's first communion.  April 28, 2013..



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