Black Forest Cake

BlackForestCake_Featured_NerdsAndNomsense

When I was a kid, we used to make chocolate cake and put cherry pie topping instead of frosting on top. We called it Black Forest Cake. It was one of my favorite things, but I kind of forgot about it as an adult. Starting Twin Peaks Tuesday, where my friends and I get together and watch the awesome TV show Twin Peaks, got me looking around for food options for my Celiac friends. I don’t know about you, but watching Twin Peaks always makes me want to eat cherry pie, doughnuts, and consume more coffee than can possibly be healthy. Unfortunately, my one foray into gluten-free pie crust was not the best experience. The homemade filling, however, was stellar. Then I remembered the chocolate cake with cherry pie topping I used to have as a child. I found a gluten-free chocolate cake recipe online and tried it out. The first attempt was too bitter and flat, more like a thick bar of semi-sweet chocolate than cake. After a few tweaks, I finally had a cake that made me happy. And it just keeps getting better every time I make it. If you want to give it a shot, you will need the following:

BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-1

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:

  • 4 1-oz squares of semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1/2 c cocoa
  • 3 eggs
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt

Cherry Pie Topping ingredients:

  • 2-3 cups frozen cherries (the one time I got canned they were GROSS)
  • 1/4 c sugar per cup of cherries
  • 2 T cornstarch per cup of cherries

Here’s how I make this recipe. Feel free to play around with it and make it work for you.

  1. Gather ingredients. Let butter warm to room temperature. I like to take this time to wipe down my prep area and make sure everything is clear of gluten. My boyfriend and I love bread and other gluten-y things, so I like to make sure there’s no trace of it on my work surface before I begin so I don’t make my Celiac friends sick. [Caveat: Wiping down the prep surfaces with cleanser and paper towels and running any utensils and bowls I’ll be using through the dishwasher works for my Celiac friends as far as keeping cross- contamination to an acceptable minimum for them. If you’re cooking for someone with a gluten allergy, make sure you talk to them about safe food handling practices that work for them. Some Celiacs are much more sensitive to gluten than others, and my method may not be sufficient for everyone.]
  2. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and spray a small pan (no larger than 8 x 8 square if you have. The one I use is about 7 x 9) with non-stick cooking spray or grease it with shortening and dust with cocoa.
  3. Cube the butter and break up the chocolate squares into smaller pieces, then add them both to a double boiler. I don’t actually have one, so I improvise with a bowl and a saucepan of water. You can also use the microwave for this step.
  4. Combine the butter and chocolate over medium to medium-high heat and stir once or twice until both are melted and incorporated together. While you’re waiting for these to melt, combine the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another. Once your butter and chocolate have melted, remove the bowl from the saucepan (use oven mitts! It’s probably hot!) and place it on a trivet or hot pad on the counter.BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-2
  5. Add the dry ingredients and stir constantly until the sugar is incorporated.
  6. Add the wet ingredients and mix well.BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-3
  7. Pour into greased pan and place in the preheated oven.
  8. Set a timer for 15-20 minutes and start checking it after the timer goes off. You’ll know the cake is finished cooking when the edges start to pull away from the pan but the center still looks a bit uncooked. Once it’s finished, set it on a trivet or hot pad and let it cool for at least 20 minutes before serving.BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-5

While you wait for the cake to bake, you can start on the cherry pie topping. Bonus: if you increase this recipe to 3-4 cups of cherries, you’ll have enough filling for a cherry pie if you want to make pie crust instead of cake!

  1. Put the frozen cherries in a pan. I like to use a non-stick skillet, because the bigger surface gives me the opportunity to check for cherry pits that were missed.
  2. Turn your burner on medium to medium-high heat and wait for your cherries to start melting and releasing their juice; stir occasionally.
  3. While you wait, combine your sugar and cornstarch in a bowl.
  4. Once the cherries and juice are bubbling and hot, add your sugar/cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly.BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-4
  5. Let the cherry mixture come to a low simmer, stirring often.
  6. Once it starts to thicken, remove from heat.
  7. As it cools it will continue to thicken up. Just give it a stir occasionally to keep it from sticking to the pan.

Once the cherries have cooled, you can either pour them directly into the cake pan, or you can serve it on the side. Commence nomming. If there are any leftovers, you can enjoy it for breakfast the next morning! See:

 BlackForrestCake_Angelina_NerdsAndNomsense-6

Gluten-Free Black Forest Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • \\Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake Ingredients://
  • 4 1oz squares of semi-sweet chocolate
  • ½ c unsalted butter
  • 1 c sugar
  • ½ c cocoa
  • 3 eggs
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt
  • \\Cherry Pie Topping//
  • 2-3 cups frozen cherries (the one time I got canned they were GROSS)
  • ¼ c sugar per cup of cherries
  • 2 T cornstarch per cup of cherries
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and spray a small pan (no larger than 8 x 8 square if you have. The one I use is about 7 x 9) with non-stick cooking spray or grease it with shortening and dust with cocoa.
  2. Cube the butter and break up the chocolate squares into smaller pieces, then add them both to a double boiler. I don't actually have one, so I improvise with a bowl and a saucepan of water. You can also use the microwave for this step.
  3. Combine the butter and chocolate over medium to medium-high heat and stir once or twice until both are melted and incorporated together. While you're waiting for these to melt, combine the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another. Once your butter and chocolate have melted, remove the bowl from the saucepan (use oven mitts! It's probably hot!) and place it on a trivet or hot pad on the counter.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and stir constantly until the sugar is incorporated.
  5. Add the wet ingredients and mix well.
  6. Pour into greased pan and place in the preheated oven.
  7. Set a timer for 15-20 minutes and start checking it after the timer goes off. You'll know the cake is finished cooking when the edges start to pull away from the pan but the center still looks a bit uncooked. Once it's finished, set it on a trivet or hot pad and let it cool for at least 20 minutes before serving.
  8. While you wait for the cake to bake, you can start on the cherry pie topping.
  9. Put the frozen cherries in a pan. I like to use a non-stick skillet, because the bigger surface gives me the opportunity to check for cherry pits that were missed.
  10. Turn your burner on medium to medium-high heat and wait for your cherries to start melting and releasing their juice; stir occasionally.
  11. While you wait, combine your sugar and cornstarch in a bowl.
  12. Once the cherries and juice are bubbling and hot, add your sugar/cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly.
  13. Let the cherry mixture come to a low simmer, stirring often.
  14. Once it starts to thicken, remove from heat.
  15. As it cools it will continue to thicken up. Just give it a stir occasionally to keep it from sticking to the pan.
 

 

 

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