black forest cake

Last time I made this cake was around a year ago. I even blogged about it. It’s worth a second blog though, and this time in a new and rather improved form.

Black forest cake is definitely a summer cake. It’s light (despite all the cream! or should I say because of all the cream) and can hold plenty of fruit.

Though, being so well-suited to brandied or preserved cherries, it makes for a wonderful winter cake too.

I guess it is an all seasons sort of cake after all.The sweetness level in this cake is minimalist, which is all you need, and keeps it refreshing.

It’s so easy for sweetness to add up when you have a cake with multiple components–it’s happened to me before. However, the only added sugar is in the chiffon cake. The cream and cherries are unsweetened, and the cake is brushed with plain kirsh instead of a syrup.

This cake did suffer from an overly high cake:cream ratio…though I also really like cream, so this is based off my own standards.  

Edit May 2018: I found a 3/5 recipe was the perfect size for three 6″ diametre layers.

black forest cake

chocolate chiffon cake

Adapted from my mum’s recipe. I found the cake layers a bit thick–cake to cream ratio was too high–so I would consider making a quarter of the batter into cupcakes so as to have thinner cake layers.  

80g cocoa powder

260 mL boiling water (or coffee or a bit of both)

180g purpose flour (substitute partially for whole wheat or even a bit of rye is yummy)

140g sugar

11g baking powder

1 tsp salt

5 large egg yolks

100 g oil

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 c egg whites (6-8 egg whites)

cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 325F. Line the bottom and sides of 3 7″/18 cm cake tins (preferably springform for ease of removal) with parchment paper.

Mix the cocoa powder and boiling water until smooth. Let cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, salt and baking powder. Separately, whisk together the egg yolks, oil and vanilla, and then combine with the cocoa powder mixture.

Whip the egg whites until foamy, add the cream of tartar and continue whipping until they reach stiff peaks.

Add the cocoa powder and egg yolk mixture to the flour and beat until smooth. Fold in a large spoonful of the egg whites completely, then fold in the remaining egg whites, maintaining as much aeration as you can.

Evenly divide the batter between the three pans.

Bake for around half an hour. An inserted skewer should be removed with only a few crumbs clinging. I then let the cakes cool in the oven, holding the door ajar with the aid of a wooden spoon handle.



1 very generous bowlful cherries, pitted and halved


a lot of heavy cream

Mix the cherries and a few tbsp of kirsch and allow to sit in the fridge overnight. The next day cook together in a saucepan until the cherries are softened and the juices are nice and thick. Let cool completely.

After they have cooled, slice off the top of at least two of the cake layers to make the surface flat and even. Brush with some kirsch. You don’t need to slice off the top of the top layer of the cake, but it works either way.

Whip the cream in a bowl until billowy and stiff.

Place one layer on a plate, spread with a generous amount of whipped cream, and top with half of the cherries. Place the next layer on top and repeat. Place the final layer. Spread with whipped cream and pile some more whipped cream onto the very centre of the cake to add height. Here you may want to chill the cake to help everything set.

Pile some strawberries and cherries onto your lovely pile of whipped cream. If you pile them high, it does tend to gradually fall, so I would place the strawberries and cherries right before serving.

It is impossible to cut a nice piece from this cake that will stand and hold its ground.


23 thoughts on “black forest cake

    1. Thank you Suzanne! It’s a perfect cake for cherries, but it does have to fight it’s way through all those other wonderful cherry desserts…I’m thinking a clafoutis for the next time 🙂


  1. Wow! Looks amazing and love it all, the great sponge, cherries and cream. Like the idea of not making it too sweet by just having kirsch. Beautiful black forest cake Laurie that makes me want to eat it immediately! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww, thank you Lili! With all the fresh fruit, not too much sweetness is needed. It helps to keep it as light and refreshing as a cake could be 🙂 Besides, it’s much easier to brush on straight kirsch than make a sugar syrup too! 😀


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