This is a lovely cake for a special occasion, delicious with its lashings of Amaretto cream, chocolate mousse, Amaretto soaked cake and the fruity tartness of sour cherries.
Almond Cherry & Chocolate Torte
- 2 x 20cm almond sponge cakes (see Basics)
- Plus 2 – 3 tbsp Amaretto
- 2 x 20cm chocolate sponge cakes (see Basics)
- 1 jar of sour cherries (680g)
For the Chocolate Mousse
- 3 eggs, separated
- 100g caster sugar
- 150g dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
- Pinch of salt
- 300ml double cream
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
For the Amaretto Cream
- 500ml double cream
- 2 tbsp Amaretto
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- ¼ tsp almond extract
For the Chocolate Curls
- 180g dark chocolate (70% chocolate)
- Make your almond and chocolate sponges following the instructions in Basics.
- Once the almond sponges have cooled brush them with the Amaretto and set aside until needed.
- In a colander, drain the cherries of their juice and set aside.
- To make the Chocolate Mousse, chop the chocolate and place in a microwave bowl. Melt in 30-second bursts, stir until smooth and set aside.
- Place the egg yolks and the caster sugar into a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Be careful not to let the bowl touch the water.
- Beat with an electric hand whisk for 8 minutes until the mixture is pale and fluffy and feels warm to the touch.
- Remove the egg mixture from the heat and slowly pour in the melted chocolate. Stir until combined.
- Beat the egg whites with the salt until stiff.
- In a separate bowl beat the double cream with the icing sugar to a soft peak.
- Carefully fold the egg whites and the cream into the chocolate mixture.
- Refrigerate the mousse for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, beat 500ml of double cream with the Amaretto, icing sugar and almond extract to a peak.
- To assemble the cake, place the first chocolate sponge onto a serving plate and enclose with a cake ring or fitting spring form ring. Line the ring with parchment paper.
- Arrange half the drained cherries over the sponge and spread with a third of the beaten cream.
- Place an almond sponge on top and spread with a third of the chocolate mousse.
- Top with the second almond sponge, arrange the remaining cherries over the sponge and spread with a further third of the cream.
- Place the remaining chocolate sponge on top and spread with a 1cm layer of chocolate mousse.
- Refrigerate the cake for one hour.
- Place the remaining chocolate mousse into a piping bag fitted with a large star shaped nozzle, repeat with the remaining cream and set aside in the fridge.
- Remove the cake from the fridge, take of the ring and peel off the parchment paper.
- Pipe alternating strips of mousse and cream around the cake and return to the fridge.
- To make the chocolate curls melt the chocolate and spread over a dry marble surface or a cold baking tray. Set aside until just set but not hard.
- Holding a chef’s knife at a 45-degree angle away from you or using a dough scraper, scrape the chocolate into curls. (If it breaks, it has already set too hard – scrape it off and melt again.)
- Liberally decorate the top of the cake with the chocolate curls.
- Keep the cake in the fridge and remove 20 minutes before serving.
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