Today my little blog turns One! It has been a fun and fulfilling journey so far and I look forward to celebrating many more such birthdays.
There have been 54 posts, almost one per week, which is honestly more than I expected to do when I started. I started this blog as a creative outlet and it has ended up being so much more.
I like to think that the constant practice has improved my writing and photography skills.
And blogging has also taught me discipline and patience. It takes a lot of time to put up a post. Cooking is only a small part of it. Staging the food, taking photos, selecting and editing photos, writing the post: these take the most time.
I have also received some interesting comments from friends and colleagues on finding out about my blogging; everything from recipe requests to “You don’t look like a food blogger (!!)”
To celebrate my little bloggie birthday, I made a very special cake that I haven’t made in over 10 years.
A Black Forest Gateau. A light chocolate sponge, soaked in cherry syrup and Kirsch, layered with fresh cherries and loads of whipped cream.
I used to make this cake all the time when I was in college. Painstakingly whipping the egg whites to stiff peaks by hand was not exactly fun, but the end result was so beautiful and luscious.
I used to receive huge compliments for this cake from everyone I made it for. Friends, classmates, relatives…
There’s one significant person though who has never tasted this cake. My husband! He’s heard about this mythical cake from my mom, my friends, my cousins, who would describe it in all its glory till his mouth watered. But since I haven’t made this cake since we started dating, he’s never eaten it. Until today…
He would have hugged that cake if he could and never let it go
The recipe I use is from a lovely little book called ‘Kitty Party & High Tea Recipes‘ by Anita Raheja and Sunita Talreja. I have adapted the recipe here and there, but most of it is from the book.
Here’s the recipe.
Black Forest Gateau
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes
For the Sponge:
6 tablespoons Milk
A little less than 2 cups Flour ( 2 tablespoons less)
2 cups Castor Sugar
3 tablespoons Cocoa Powder
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
For the Icing and Decoration:
600 grams Heavy Cream
10 tablespoons Icing Sugar
200 grams Fresh Cherries
4 tablespoons Kirsch or White Rum (omit, if making for kids)
4 tablespoons Cherry Syrup (if not using the Kirsch or rum)
1 slab Dark Chocolate
Butter, for greasing
Flour, for dusting
Sieve the flour with the cocoa and baking powder.
Separate the eggs.
Beat the egg whites until stiff gradually adding in the sugar a little at a time, till it feels light and forms peaks.
Add in beaten egg yolks and fold in gently.
Add in the sieved flour and the milk and mix gently.
Grease a large round cake tin with butter and dust it with flour.
Pour in the cake batter and bake at 200 C for about 40-45 minutes till a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean.
Cool the cake completely and cut it horizontally into 2 layers.
Icing and Assembly:
Soak the 2 cake layers in Kirsch, rum or cherry syrup. Whip the cream until light and stiff. Add the icing sugar and mix gently.
Deseed the cherries, keeping a few aside for decoration.
Take half of the whipped cream, add the cherries and put this mixture over the top of the bottom half of the cake.
Now press the other half over it.
Spread the remaining cream over the cake.
Decorate with the remaining cherries.
Shave the dark chocolate roughly and sprinkle the shavings over the cake.
Keep the cake refrigerated until its time to serve.