Black Forest Cake

As a cherry fanatic, my ALL-TIME favorite dessert is Black Forest Cake- this delicious chocolate sponge cake, layered with a kirsch-infused cherry filling, and covered with a whipped cream frosting originated from Germany. Though many variations of the dessert exist today, this recipe is for that mouth-watering original German style Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte.

For the Cake:

  • 8 eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  •  2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch of salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  2. Butter and line the bottom of two 9-inch round, or three 8 inch cake pans with parchment paper.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and the butter for 2-3 minutes until light and airy, slowly add the eggs, incorporating one egg at a time and beating after each addition.
  4. In a jug, mix together the milk, sour cream and vanilla extract.
  5. In a separate bowl, sift the dry ingredients together and then add 1/3 of the flour mix to the egg mixture, combining, before adding half the milk mixture, beating, then another 3/rd flour mix, the remainder of the milk and finishing with the last 1/3 of the flour mix. Make sure to combine after each addition.
  6. Mix the batter on low speed, until everything is combined.
  7. Divide the batter equally into the two prepared pans.
  8. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  9. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and allow to cool in the pans for 15 minutes before removing and allowing to cool completely.

Kirsch Cherry filling:

  • 1½ lbs fresh black cherries (frozen or canned can be used if fresh are not in season)
  • ½ cup kirsch (black cherry liquor)
  • 2/3  cup white sugar
  • ¼ cup cold water
  • 1 tablespoons cornstarch (dissolved in 1 tablespoon of water)


  1.  Pit and chop the black cherries before macerating with ½ cup kirsch for 1 hour. Let cherries sit in the fridge overnight if possible!
  2. Drain the cherries and reserve the kirsch liquid.
  3. In a medium saucepan, place the cherries, sugar and the cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and stir to avoid catching.  In a small bowl mix cornstarch with water to a paste and then add to the saucepan and stir until thickened and bubbling. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.

Whipped cream frosting:

  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons gelatin powder
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, sprinkle the gelatin powder into a ¼ cup of the heavy cream and allow to soften for 5 minutes.
  2. Dissolve the gelatin by microwaving for 2-3 minutes, make sure to stir after every minute. Remove liquid from microwave and allow to sit at room temperature until cool.
  3. In a separate mixing bowl, pour in the remaining cream, sugar, and vanilla extract. At a medium, low speed, beat the ingredients together until thickened. Make sure you don’t over-beat and turn the cream into butter!
  4. Lastly, add the prepared gelatin mixture to the cream, pouring in a steady stream while beating constantly. Beat until stiff peaks form.

Frosting will remain stable due to the gelatin!

To decorate:

  • 6 ounces good quality dark chocolate shavings
  • 8 Kirsch soaked black cherries

To Assemble:

Remove domes from cake layers and torte into two even layers.

Place a cake round onto a board and spoon over a little of the reserved kirsch liquid from the soaked cherries.

Place Whipped filling in a piping bag fitted with a round tip and pipe a dam around the cake.

Fill the damn with a layer of the cherry filling and then pipe more whipped cream over the top, add another layer of cake and add more whipped cream filling, add another layer of cake, this time piping a dam and adding more cherry filling and whipped cream, place on final layer of cake and refrigerate until firm.

Crumb coat chilled cake with whipped cream and chill. Add the final layer of whipped cream frosting. Decorate the outside with chocolate shavings and the top of the cake with kirsch soaked cherries.



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