Four chocolate layers filled with vanilla and brandy mousse, studded with Morello cherries and ganache drizzled over. Everyone needs their version of Black Forest Cake. Here is mine and I hope it will becomes yours as well!
  • For the Cake
  • 220g/1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 300g/1 ½ cups white granulated sugar
  • 90g/3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs large
  • 250ml/1 cup whole milk or 2%
  • 125ml/ ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • For the filling
  • 600ml/2 ½ cups heavy cream/double cream
  • 100g/1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • 1 vanilla bean or 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tsp gelatine
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 250g/1 cup cherries from Amarena cherry conserve chopped
  • 70ml/1/4 cup Amarena cherry syrup
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • For Chocolate Ganache
  • 125ml/1/2 cup heavy cream/double cream
  • 125g/3/4 cup dark chocolate
  • 8 fresh cherries
  1. Preheat oven to 350F/180C. In a large mixing bowl combine sifted flour and cocoa, sugar, baking powder and baking soda and salt. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into two 8" pans. Bake at 350F/180C for 30 minutes.
  2. Remove the cakes from the oven and let cool on a wire rack.
  3. In a 250ml/1 cup glass measuring cup combine cold water and gelatin. Let stand for 2 minutes. Place measuring cup in a microwave and heat for 15 seconds until gelatine is completely dissolved.
  4. Run a sharp knife along the length of a vanilla bean, open it and with a blade of a knife scrape out the seeds.
  5. In a large mixing bowl beat whipping cream, icing sugar, vanilla bean seeds and brandy with an electric mixer on medium speed while gradually drizzling gelatin mixture over cream mixture. Continue beating cream mixture until stiff peaks form. (Adding gelatine to the filling gives it more stability.)
  6. Cut each cake layer horizontally in two. You will have 4 layers. Brush the cake layers with the mixture of cherry syrup and brandy.
  7. Fill the cake with the vanilla cream filling and chopped morello cherries. Leave ¼ of the whipped cream for the sides and the top. Cover the sides and the top of the cake with the whipping cream.
  8. To make the ganache
  9. Heat ½ cup of whipping cream in a saucepan and take off the heat just when it's about to come to a boil. Pour over chopped chocolate. Let it sit for a minute, then stir.
  10. Drizzle chocolate ganache over the edge of the cake. Pipe rosettes and decorate with fresh cherries. Sprinkle grated chocolate on top of the cake.
  11. Chill in the fridge for the mousse filling and chocolate ganache to set. Keep refrigerated.