Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Deconstructed Black Forest Cake - minus pics :(

Last week I posted what I hoped to be my next great baking adventure. Click here to see it if you haven't already. Unfortunately, I am not going to be making this particular recipe... but I plan to keep it in my archive for the next dinner party I get a chance to sweeten :) And I am also making a less exciting version of Black Forest cake on Friday, and i will for sure post pictures of that! But it would not be fair if I didn't post this other recipe at all, since it is indeed one of the coolest dessert ideas ever... at least i think so

So here are the directions, and at the end are my comments on what I would potentially change.

TREND: Deconstructed desserts (breaking down a dish into its essential components, then serving the parts as a whole)

WHAT: The elements of Black Forest Cake — chocolate cake and pudding, cherries, whipped cream, and kirsch — are reimagined as sensuous, separate bites and sips.

Servings: Makes 10 servings


Chocolate Sour Cream Cake
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups (packed) golden brown sugar
2 large eggs
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
2/3 cup sour cream
3/4 cup hot coffee

Chocolate fudge pots
2 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 cups heavy whipping cream
Pinch of salt
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar

Cherry Compote
4 cups frozen (unthawed) pitted cherries (about 1 pound)
2/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
2/3 cup dry red wine

Other Miscellaneous Ingredients
Unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup chilled whipping cream
Chilled kirsch (clear cherry brandy)

PreparationFor cake
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Butter 14x10x1-inch rimmed baking sheet. Line sheet with parchment; butter paper
- Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until smooth
- Add sugar and eggs; beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes
- Mix in next 4 ingredients
- Beat in flour alternately with sour cream in 2 additions each
- Gradually add hot coffee; mix until smooth (batter will be thin)
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake cake until toothpick inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 25 minutes
- Cool cake in pan on rack
- Cover and chill until cold, about 4 hours (Can be made 1 day ahead)

For chocolate fudge pots
- Preheat oven to 325°F
- Place chocolate in bowl
- Bring cream and salt just to boil in medium saucepan
- Pour over chocolate; whisk until melted
- Whisk yolks and sugar in bowl to blend; whisk in hot chocolate mixture
- Transfer mixture to same saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat until slightly thickened, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes (do not boil)
- Divide chocolate custard among ten 1/3-cup ramekins (about 1/4 cup in each)
- Place ramekins in large roasting pan
- Add enough water to pan to come halfway up sides of ramekins. Cover pan tightly with foil.
- Bake until custards are almost set, about 37 minutes
- Remove ramekins from pan; cool 15 minutes. Chill uncovered until cold, about 3 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead.)

For cherry compote
- Stir cherries and 2/3 cup sugar in large saucepan over medium heat 2 minutes
- Add wine; simmer until slightly reduced, about 4 minutes
- Drain cherries over medium bowl; return juices to saucepan and reserve cherries in same bowl
- Boil juices until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 8 minutes
- Pour over cherries; cool

- Using 3-inch-diameter cookie cutter and dipping edges of cutter into cocoa powder, cut 10 rounds from cold cake
- Let cakes come to room temperature
- Using electric mixer, whip cream and 1 teaspoon sugar in bowl until peaks form
- Pour kirsch into 10 small glasses
- Place 1 cake, 1 chocolate fudge pot, spoonful of cherries, whipped cream, and glass of kirsch on each of 10 plates and serve

So here are my two cents... as i haven't actually made this, I can only offer opinions. I read that the cherries can be substituted for canned cherries, cherry pie filling, or if you're feeling healthy, then organic fresh cherries. Each variation would probably make a pretty significant difference, so it's pretty much up to you. The only other thing I read that really stood out was the use of the kirsch. I have never actually tried the stuff... but i've heard that it's like fire water. There were reviews on this recipe where people had used the kirsch, and others where they did not. Both had good things to say. I think honestly that it's a matter of taste... it could possibly balance out the sweetness of everything else... but i suspect that you could substitute something else... just not sure what :)

Anyways, if YOU make this recipe, I want to see it!

1 extraordinary comments:

G. March 6, 2008 at 1:51 PM  

Hi Amanda, This recipe looks really cool. I've never heard of deconstructed desserts. It would be fun to experiment with different desserts like this..and I happen to love black forest cake!
Thanks for your comment on my blog.

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