Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte was first mentioned in writing in 1934. The dessert is named not directly after the Black Forest (Schwarzwald), mountain range in southwestern Germany, but rather from the specialty liquor of that region, known as Schwarzwälder Kirsch(wasser) and distilled from tart cherries. This is the ingredient, with its distinctive cherry pit flavor and alcoholic content, that gives the dessert its flavor. Cherries, cream, and Kirschwasser were first combined in the form of a dessert in which cooked cherries were served with cream and Kirschwasser, while a cake combining cherries, cookies / biscuits and cream (but without Kirschwasser) probably originated in Germany.
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (butter-) milk
1/2 cup shortening
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup Schwarzwaelder Kirschwasser (or cherry liquor)
1 cup sugar powder
1 pinch salt
1 can (0.5 liter) pitted cherries, drained
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon Kirschwasser
1 square semisweet chocolate, or remaining crumbs
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line the bottoms of two 8 inch round pans with parchment paper circles (since I didn’t have such paper, I just greased the pans). Sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda and 1 teaspoon salt. Set aside.
2. Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat well. Add vanilla. Add flour mixture, alternating with milk, beat until combined.
3. Pour into 2 round 8 inch pans. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool completely. Remove paper (if any) from under the cakes. Cut each layer in half, horizontally, making 4 layers total (as you can see from my picture, I chose not to cut the layers because they looked too fragile to cut them). Sprinkle layers with 1/2 cup Kirschwasser.
4. In a separate bowl, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Beat in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1 tablespoon Kirschwasser. Add sugar powder, and a pinch of salt. Beat again. Spread first layer of cake with 1/3 of the filling (use 1/2 of the filling if you have only 2 layers instead of 4). Top with 1/3 (2/3) of the cherries. Repeat with the remaining layer(s).
5. Frost top and sides of cake. Sprinkle with chocolate curls made by using a potato peeler on semisweet baking chocolate. Or you can use the remaining crumbs to sprinkle the sides of your Black Forest Cake.
Now, get your cup of tea or coffee, and Guten Appetit!
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