April 20, 2008

happy birthday papa!

friday was my dad's 71st birthday! on one of my many trips to the gourmet warehouse i saw these:my mom had asked us to get him some corn holders around christmas time, but i never got around to it until i found those. i also picked up a "butter girl". she was also at the gourmet warehouse, but i found them online here.





i can always remember growing up knowing that black forest cherry cake was my dad's favourite- but only the version from his mother's german cookbook. i made it last year for his birthday and so i made it again this year. it's fairly simple, using the beaten eggs for volume. one thing though... make sure your flour and cocoa is fully combined before folding it into the batter as it will deflate the eggs and you'll end up with a much denser cake. still tasty though. also, if you don't want to spend the dollars on the kirsch, just use the juice from the jar of cherries- i bet no one will even notice!


black forest cherry cake
chocolate curls:8oz semisweet bar chocolate
to make chocolate curls to garnish the cake, the bar or chunks of chocolate should be at room temperature but not soft. hold the chocolate over wax paper or foil and shave the bar or square into thin curls with a sharp narrow-bladed vegetable peeler. draw the peeler along the wide surface of the chocolate for large curls, and along the narrow side for small ones. handle the chocolate as little as possible. refridgerate or freeze the curls until you are ready to use them.

cake:

1tbsp butter, softened

6tbsp flour

10 tablespoons sweet butter

6 eggs, room temperature

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup sugar

1/2 sifted flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. with a pastry brush or paper towel, lightly coat the bottoms and side of three 7-inch round cake pans with soft butter, using about 1 tablespoon of butter in all. sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour into each pan, tip them from side to side to spread the flour evenly, then invert the pans and rap them sharply on a table to remove any excess flour. set the pans aside.clarify 10 tablespoons of butter in a small saucepan by melting it slowly over low heat without letting it brown. let it rest for a minute off the heat, then skim off the foam. spoon the clear butter into a bowl and set aside. discard the milky solids at the bottom of the pan.

in an electric mixer, beat the eggs, vanilla and 1 cup of sugar together at high speed for at least 10 minutes, or until the mixture is thick and fluffy. combine the 1/2 cup sifted flour and unsweentened cocoa in a sifter. a little at a time sift the mixture over the eggs, folding it in gently with a rubber spatula. finally, add the clarified butter 2 tablespoons at a time. do not overmix. gently pour the batter into the prepared cake pans dividing it evenly among the three of them.bake in the middle of the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until a cake tester insterted into the centre of each cake comes out clean. remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool in the pans for about 5 minutes. then run a sharp knife around the edge of each cake and turn them out on racks to cool completely.

syrup:

3/4 cup sugar

1 cup cold water

1/2 cup kirsch (or just brandy, or juice from jar o'cherries)

meanwhile, prepare the kirsch syrup in the following fashion: combine 3/4 cup sugar and 1 cup of cold water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over moderate heat, stirring only until the sugar dissolves. boil briskly, uncovered, for 5 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and when the syrup has cooed to lukewarm stir in the kirsch.transfter the cakes to a long strip of wax paper and prick each layer ligtly in several places with the tines of a long fork. sprinkle the layers evenly with the syrup and let them rest for at least 5 minutes.

filling and topping:

3 cups chilled heavy cream

1/2 cup confectioner's sugar

1/4 cup kirsch (or brandy or juice)

1 cup poached pitted fresh red cherries, or 1 cup drained and rinsed canner sour red cherriesfresh sweet red cherries with stems, or substitue maraschino cherries with stems, drained and rinsed

if you are using fresh cherries for the filling, poach them in the following fashion: remove their stems and pits, then combine them with 2 cups of water and 3/4 cup of sugar in a small saucepan. bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low, simmer for 5 minutes, or until the cherries are tender. drain them in a colander, discarding the syrup, and pat the cerries completely dry with paper towels.

in a large chilled bowl, beat the cream with a whisk or a rotarty or electric beater until it thickens lightly. then sift 1/2 cup of confectioner's sugar over the cream and continue beating until the cream forms firm peaks on the beater when it is lifted out of the bowl. pour in the 1/4 cup kirsch in a thin stream, and beat only until the kirsch is absorbed.to assemble the cake, place one of the three layers in the centre of a serving plate. with a spatula, spread the top with a 1/2 inch of whipped cream and strew the cup of fresh or canned cherries over it leaving about 1/2 inch of cream free of cherries around the perimeter. gently set a second layer on top of the cherries and spread it with 1/2 inch of chipped cream. then seth the third layer in place. spread the top and sides of the cake with the reamaining cream.with your fingers, gently press the chocolate curls into the cream on the sides fo the cake and arrange a few chocolate curls and fresh or maraschino cherries attractively on top.
my sister made mini pineapple upside-down cakes! yummy!

1 comment:

eatme_delicious said...

I've never been to Gourmet Warehouse though funnily enough I just discovered it somehow through google or something. I definitely have to go check that place out!