Thursday 5 December 2013

Want to Impress - Fail Proof, Cheats, Black Forest Cake (never fails to rise)

Whenever I want to impress, I bake my fail proof chocolate cake. This recipe is my basic recipe with a few extras. The basic recipe is simple, easily adapted and all ingredients go into a food processor or mixing bowl. I guarantee it will rise triumphantly and taste so delicious you will never need another chocolate cake recipe again.


1 cup caster sugar (extra fine granulated)
2 eggs
1 cup of black cherry yogurt or plain yogurt
3/4 cup cocoa
200gms soft butter
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 and a half teaspoons vanilla essence
1/4 tsp salt
3 cups self raising flour
1 cup coffee (strong)
8" or 20cm diameter cake tin with deep sides (spring bottom is best to be able to get the cake out easily after)

Decorating Ingredients:

Whipping Cream
Black cherry Jam or Blackberry (approximately 2/3rds cup)
Fresh cherries (about 10, stems on)
Icing sugar 
Bar of Dark Chocolate
Tin or jar of pitted cherries

  • Put all ingredients except 'decorating' ingredients into a food processor or large bowl and mix well
  • Turn into a loose bottom cake tin which is pre greased and lined with baking paper so that it extends about 3" above the pan
  • Bake for 1 hour and 10 mins at 160 degrees Celsius (320 Fahrenheit) (check with cake skewer in the centre after one hour then again at 1 hour 10 mins to make sure skewer comes out clean, cooking time can depend on your ovens temperature)
  • Allow to stand until fully cooled before removing from cake tin
  • Slice carefully in the middle, you can cut twice if you wish to have a higher stack but once is sufficient
  • Spread the Black Cherry jam over the lower layer, then spread with the tinned/preserved pitted cherries
  • Place the other cake layer carefully on top
  • Ice with chocolate icing (I cheated and bought some packet chocolate icing)
  • Place fresh cherries in a pile in the centre of the cake
  • Melt chocolate in a double boiler or use the method I used making Rocky Road Bark
  • Spread melted chocolate out thinly onto a sheet of tin foil or parchment paper that has been placed on top of a thin metal tray. Place in freezer for a short time to harden
  • Remove chocolate from freezer and break into shards
  • dust the top of the cake with icing sugar and then place your shards upright around the cherries, see photo below
  • Whip your cream and serve beside a slice of cake
This recipe can be adapted in so many ways, you can simply serve slices of the basic cake recipe with hot fudge sauce and ice cream, whipped cream or slice and fill with chocolate icing and simply dust with icing sugar. I guarantee it is a recipe that will rise every time and won't fail to impress.

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Lee x


  1. Sounds and looks AMAZING. I love Black Forest cake. The stacked cherries on top are beautiful.

    1. Thanks Stephen, this recipe is so simple and always rises amazingly.

  2. Wow, I AM inspired. That is absolutely gorgeous. I;ve never baked anything like it. i wonder if a beginner could do it? Amazing!

    1. Hi Stacy,

      Most certainly this is a beginners cake, I am not a great baker but good at anything savory, hence why I use this basic recipe all the time. The extras that make it into a Black Forest cake are simple. You have to try it, seriously if it doesn't rise hugely I will be astounded. Just make sure it is not 'overcooked' so you don't dry it out. I check at an hour and then again 10/15 mins later.

  3. Oh my goodness gracious... it looks and sounds heavenly...


    1. So easy to make Cindy, gosh sorry I have only just seen this comment and I am a bit late to say the least to respond...oops.

  4. Hi Lee,

    I used to use your recipe all the time and I got lots of compliments on the cake :D Have you made a few changes to the recipe? I seem to remember using milk in it. Can I use a cup of milk instead of the yoghurt? If I were to use the yoghurt, can I use the good old Meadow Fresh type that comes in the 2kg tubs? Thanks!

    1. Hi, I don't think I have made any changes to the basic recipe, I have always used yoghurt not milk, you could use milk but it wouldn't be as moist as the yoghurt gives it the moistness. I only used cherry yoghurt in this recipe as it was a black forest version but yes Meadow Fresh is fine, any yoghurt will do but you will want to use plain yoghurt for the basic recipe. It is only a cupful so you won't need the 2kg tub :) For some odd reason I can't find the original blog post only the gateau one. Let me know how you get on :)

    2. Oh, here is the original recipe I used it to make this naked cake too


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