With cherry season here, the fruit is ripe for the pickin', literally. Chocolate and cherries are a classic combination and I especially love it in this black forest cake. The recipe calls for frozen berries but since they are in season, use the fresh. Black or bing cherries are best for this recipe because they have a intense cherry flavor compared to other varieties. You can make this dessert for a potluck, party, or just for an after dinner treat. Whatever your purposes, your guests will devour this black forest cake in minutes
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pans
2 cups sugar
¾ cup good cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk, shaken
½ cup vegetable oil
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
One 340g (12 oz) bag of frozen dark sweet cherries
2 cups heavy cream, lightly whipped
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate for thin curls
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 8 X 2-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans. Thaw the bag of dark sweet cherries.
Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With the mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.
Place one layer, flat side up, on a flat plate or cake pedestal. With a knife or offset spatula, spread the top with frosting. Add the dark sweet cherries and spread evenly on the frosting (keep 5 or 6 cherries for decorating the cake). Spread some lightly whipped heavy cream on top of the dark sweet cherries. Place the second layer on top, rounded side up, and spread the frosting evenly on the top and sides of the cake. Spread some lightly whipped heavy cream on top of the frosting. Use a potato peeler to shave off thin curls of the semi-sweet chocolate and sprinkle on the top of the cake and top with the 5 cherries.