Happy Tuesday! So, I am writing from my bedroom in my ridiculously sexy flannel pjs. I am ill at the moment and have been written off work… I have something similar to chicken pox… I know… rather disgusting! Thus why I have been off the baking and blogging recently! But there is only so many series I can watch before I start to go a bit nutty. So, I thought I would dig up some baking I have done over the past few weeks and edit the photos for a post – I took lots of photos for this so I had been leaving the editing until I had some spare time which never happened. They are delish – really rich sponge! I think one right now would be just what the doctor ordered… oh.. I forgot NO CHOCOLATE OR NUTS for me until the rash has gone (hahah.. I’m such an awful whiner and matyr… I know). This is slightly more time consuming than many of my recipes, but easy none the less. They are my adaptation of Black Forest cakes, in mini form.
Black Forest Cake for those who may (worryingly) have never heard of or tried it, is a sumptuous combination of chocolate, cherry flavours with a dash of cream for good measure. It is a classic…. and like Bridget Jones’s mum, I am on a mission to make classics in a miniature form. Because… it’s funny and slightly more comic than their normal sized version.
I wanted to give a shout out to Ailine from aicuisine.com, because she did a food photography workshop at the Hive and it was awesome. She said to include more of your in between steps rather than just the final product. I agree that it makes for a far more useful and interesting recipe post. Also check out her blog, the photography and recipes are out of this world. She writes in German and English!
So here is the recipe:
225g plain flour
350g caster sugar
85g cocoa powder
1½ tsp baking powder
1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
125ml vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
250ml boiling water
2 large handfuls of fresh cherries
200g Dark cooking chocolate
100ml whipping cream
1 handful whole, fresh cherries (to put on top)
- Preheat the oven to 180C and grease a mini cake baking tray (muffin tray is fine too)
- Mix together ALL the ingredients, except the boiling water, in a large bowl.
- Add the boiling water to the mixture, a little at a time, until smooth – the consistency will now be very fluid.
- Add the batter to the baking tray until each section is half full.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the sponge springs bake when pressed.
- Leave to cool slightly and then transfer onto a wire cooling rack.
- Take the 2 handfuls of cherries and remove the stems and pips
- Place these in a food processor or blender with half a tablespoon or water and blend until liquid (like in image below)
- Spoon onto the cooled cakes (not so much that it drips down)
- Melt the dark chocolate ( I cheat and microwave it…. but you can do it old school and put it over boiling water in a heatproof bowl)
- Pour a small amount of the melted chocolate over each cake (see images for amount)
- Leave to cool slightly until the chocolate is no longer warm
- Whip the cream and place in a piping tube with a star tip
- Once the chocolate has cooled, pipe one star like blob of cream on top of each cake
- Place a cherry WITH CARE on top of the cream
… and taaaaaada!
This is me showing you that I may look like I can bake perfectly.. but it is all a lie.. haha. Here is my FAIL first attempt: (the chocolate was still hot and so the cream and cherries were sliding about… which is why patience is a virtue that I need to get ASAP.
This is the second – much better and much less slippery attempt 🙂