At first glance it might seem that I am just a happy, normal girl who loves to bake and walk her dog. However, I have suffered with an eating disorder since I was 13. It was only in May 2014 when I realised that this Voice in my head was slowly but surely trying to kill me. And so began the long, hard, and painful journey which is recovery...

I want My Cocoa Stained Apron to be a special place...a place for reflection, memories, shared stories...and of course a little bit of cocoa-staining ;) Recovery might be the hardest thing you ever choose to do in this life. But it is also the bravest and best decision you will ever make.:)

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Black forest gateau!!!

This is yet another post I dedicate to a special reader <3 it's my own version of the famous Black Forest Gateau - that spectacular, extremely rich, and tantalizingly tempting chocolate cake which originates (I think? ;) ) in the Rhinelands of Germany, and which marries sweet sticky cherries, lashings of whipped cream, and, of course, a substantial quantity of some form of chocolate based icing (haha...well at least the Ganache-Elf's version does. ;) ) in one beautiful, show-stopping cake.

Now if you are a purist baker, you might not approve of my adaptation of Deutschland's most famous - and,arguably, yummiest - dessert. Cherry liquer is often used in Black Forest Gateua, as are fresh cherries - not glace ones!! Haha, I suppose this is sort of a budget Black Forest Gateau, right? But is there any compromise on taste and aesthetic appeal? No, of course not. ;)

Ingredients :)

For the cake:

  • 200 g self-raising flour
  • 225 g caster sugar
  • 225 g margarine/butter, softened
  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 large tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1-3 tbsp full-fat milk
For the filling and icing - 

  • 300 ml single cream
  • 100 g plain chocolate
  • 75 g glace cherries. halved
  1. Make the sponge first: preheat the oven to 180 c/160 c. Grease two 20 cm sandwich tins and line the bases with baking paper.
  2. measure the butter/margarine into a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until very soft.
  3. Place the 4 tbsp cocoa powder in a small separate bowl and add about 5 tbsp hot water to get a chocolatey paste of about the same consistency as margarine.
  4. Add the eggs, the caster sugar, the flour, the baking powder to the softened butter and then add the cocoa. Mix well with an electric mixer for about 2 minutes; before pausing the mixer and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a large metal spoon. Resume mixing for another minute until smooth and well-blended.  
  5. Spoon up some of the batter and let it fall back into the bowl to check it is of a nice, soft, dropping consistency. Add 1 - 3 tbsp of milk, a tbsp at a time, if it seems a little on the thick side. 
  6. Divide the batter equally amongst the two tins and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.
  7. Bake for 20 – 30 minutes in the preheated oven until the sponges are well-risen and spring back beneath the fingertip when pressed gently on the top. If an indent is left when you do this, bake for a few minutes more before testing again.
  8. Leave in the tin for a few minutes before turning out onto a wire rack, peeling off the paper and leaving to cool.
  9. Make the dark choc ganache by melting the 100g plain chocolate with 100 ml of the single cream, on a very low heat in a small saucepan. Stir until smooth and then refrigerate for about 1 ½ - 2 hours, checking after 1 ½ hours…you don’t want it very hard, just a nice spreadable consistency.
  10. When the gancahe is ready, whip the remaining 200 ml  cream until it forms soft peaks - be careful not to overbeat. 
  11. Stand one of the cooled sponges on a plate. Spread the whipped cream generously over its top. 
  12. Divide the halved glace cherries, cut side down, in the layer of cream, pressing them down gently as you go. Try to distribute them at regular intervals so a nice even pattern can be seen when you cut it. Place the other sponge on top of the whipped cream.
  13. Use a palette knife to swirl most of the ganache over the top of the cake, reserving just a little for piping.
  14.  Use the remaining ganache to make pretty swirly rosettes , using a icing bag fitted with a fluted nozzle, on top of the cake. 


  1. OMG *_* I absolutely can´t believe how cuuute you are Emmy :) I feel so honored and this post is soooo lovely :) Your cake looks absolutely stunning and I am 100% sure it will taste soooo delicious *_* Omg, I would love to come over and try a piece together with your special hot choc hun :) next to your fire place =) I also love how you give the cake your very special touch and I think that´s what a really great baker always does :) keep that up :) Love u so much

    1. Awwww hun you are so welcome! I am glad you like it hun <3 I know hun it is not a proper Black Forest Gateau but I thought I would create my own version, just for you hun! <3 An extra special cake for my extra special reader <3 :* Awwww hun I would love that so much!! Hot choc, fire and homemade cakes and chats with Ange? Awww hun I would love that so, so much ! ;) My next mission hun is to make a NUTELLA cake I think ;) awww I can't agree more hun! It's the little individual touches which make all the difference! <3 dawwh <3 you too huni :* xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  2. Awwwwww ... *-* this is so nice and sweet of you huuuun ;) I wash´t quite 100% sure I am the special reader from Germany (because you maybe have more of them ;)) but I am soooo honooooooured now Emmy, soooo thank you sooo so much :)
    Omg, this would be heaven :-* can´t wait tooooo finally realize these thought in real life :) let´s do it in 2015 :)
    Hahaaaa you are so lovely OMG*_*, this would be unbelievably and a dream come true: A Nutella Cake!!!!! Yuuuuuummi ;)

    1. Heehee I don't know if I have any other German readers now hun, but I was most certainly referring to you hun when I wrote this poost <3 Awww I so hope so too hun, that would be a dream come true <3 yes hun, keep an eye out for it, I've never used Nutella in baking before so it could be interesting alright... ;) xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx