PROJECT: How To Make A Black Forest Gateau Cake

I am the proud mother of two wonderful children. I know everyone is proud of their children, but seriously … super PROUD! On so many occasions have people commented on how well behaved my children are. A friend once asked me at what age were my children the most difficult? I honestly could not answer it. They have made my life so easy.


I grew up with two brothers … so there was always the three of us. In my heart I always wanted three children. Life however decided differently for me. After falling ill with depression amongst other illnesses, my priorities changed. I no longer had the strength mentally or physically to bear another child. I also wanted to dedicated more time to the two children that I do have. So why all this talk of children and babies?

Well, my dear cousin gave birth last week to the most adorable baby girl. I am feeling a little envy – knowing that I will never have another child , another newborn baby. But on the flip side … I get to cuddle and play my new little niece and not have to worry about sleepless nights and changing nappies. That is a plus for me.

So to celebrate the arrival of Isabella, I decided to make a little cake to take round on my visit. I wanted something simple but extra yummy!

My all time favourite cake is the retro Black Forest Gateau … a super moist chocolate cake with cherry conserve or compote (usually flavoured with a hint of Kirsch liquor – but I’ll keep this alcohol free) and plenty of chocolate shavings. Ahhhhhh so yummy! So this was my cake of choice.

cherries close up close up delicious

I started by baking three 6″ chocolate sponges – I allowed them to cool slightly in the tin before turning out and allowing them to cool completely. I levelled the top of the cakes so that each cake was about 3.5cm thick.


Next, I whipped some double cream in a large bowl and added a little icing sugar for some sweetness. In the summer months when the air is warmer, I would stabilise my whipped cream so that it wouldn’t melt and could withstand the heat. In the colder months I don’t feel the need to do that, the cream holds well on its own.


I stacked the cakes on a cake board filling each sponge with an even layer of fresh whipped cream and a generous serving of cherry conserve. Once all the layers have been stacked, I covered the cake in a thin layer of the whipped cream.


I wanted to make this cake a little fancier than the retro image that I was familiar with. So instead of covering the cake with chocolate shavings, I used some chocolate cigarellos to decorate the outside of the cake. I bought these chocolate cigarellos from the Chocolate Trading Company. They can be bought in different quantities and come in three varieties … white, milk and dark chocolate. For this 6″ cake I used approximately 60 milk chocolate cigarellos for a three layer cake. The cigarellos do stick well to the cream on the cake, but for a little added security, I tied a little white ribbon around the cake.


In a piping bag with a rosette nozzle I filled it with some of the cream, then I piped some fresh cream on top of the cake …


… and also added some glace cherries. It’s beginning to look a lot like a Black Forest Gateau now.

IMG_1948  IMG_1952

I wanted to add some personalisation to the cake so I decided to make some bunting. I love adding bunting to a cake because it makes the cake look super fun and playful.


To personalise the cake, I made some yellow triangles each with a letter for the name Isabella. I printed these and cut them out.


I glued each triangle on the string, making sure that it was stuck down securely.


I inserted two gold coloured paper straws into the cake and secured the bunting to the tops of the straws. This is such a simple, yet effective way of adding a little personal touch to a cake.


To finish, I sprinkled some grated chocolate on top of the cake. I did consider drizzling some (watered down) cherry conserve to the top of the cake, but I didn’t want to risk the cake looking messy.

This was a last-minute cake design. I considered so many different styles and designs of cake, but I wanted something simple and classic. With time constraints, I was very pleased at how this cake had turned out.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get to stay and taste the cake, but I was told it was super delicious.

What are your cake plans for this week? I would love to hear all about it.

Until next week …

~ The Cake Lady xx



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