A moist and irresistible chocolate cherry cake that will have you coming back for more. This cake is simple to put together and is full of great flavor.
My two-year blogiversary happened a couple of weeks ago! I wanted to celebrate on the day, but I had so much trouble deciding on a cake. When I came up with one (A chocolate bourbon cake with chocolate frosting and a mini crombouche on top), I couldn’t help but feel too intimidated to actually take it on. I wanted something a little more simple.
I was talking to one of my friends (my long time bestie from high school) about her birthday cake that I was going to make for her and that was what inspired this chocolate cherry cake. Something a little more like me. Simple. So that we can focus on the heart of the matter which is flavor. I used the same chocolate cake base that I’ve used in my Christmas cake and added a bit more chocolate. I then brushed it with a cherry liquer and covered it in cherry Swiss meringue buttercream. And since I hate frosting cakes and this is a cake for me, I left it naked. In my opinion, chocolate and cherry is the best combination. I might even love it even more than I love chocolate and orange.
I suppose now is the time I should reflect on the past year of blogging. I enjoyed it so much more than my first year and in many ways think of this as being my true first year of really blogging. Before I was simply throwing stuff out there and embarrassingly clueless as to what I was doing. I’ve been able to get to know some truly amazing and talented people and work with some of my absolute favorite brands that I am honored to have even had the chance to collaborate together. It was also my first full year of blogging full-time. I learned a lot about balancing being a single mom and working at home with a four-year old. It’s been a challenge, but so worth it.
What’s kept me going are people like you. No, really. You coming to the blog and reading my rambling and sharing my recipes and subscribing to the newsletter and following me on social media. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do if it weren’t for you. You’ve given me the chance to follow a dream and turn it into something wonderful that makes me delieriously happy. You are awesome, and I love you.
Okay, so mushy stuff aside, let’s get on to the chocolate cherry cake…… annnnnnnd a little giveaway! I didn’t really plan anything ahead of time, but my friends at Rodelle were kind enough to give away some of my favorite Rodelle products to one person!
All you have to do to enter is to comment below and tell me your favorite food memory. It can be a particular moment in time like when your mom made you homemade chicken noodle soup when you were sick one day, or a dish that immediately takes you back to your childhood.
Chocolate Cherry Cake Recipe Notes
If you aren’t great at handling cakes, I recommend using a cake leveler to split the cake in half. Taste the frosting as you add the cherries. You may end up needing less. Also be careful with the consistency, you don’t want it too loose. So when I tell you to add the cherries 1/4 cup at a time to this chocolate cherry cake, please listen! If you want to bump up that cherry flavor even more, add 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract.
- 1½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1½ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups hot strong brewed coffee
- 9 ounces dark chocolate
- ⅔ cups Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 4 eggs
- ¼ cup cherry liqueur
- ¾lbs cherries, pitted and quartered
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 4 large egg whites
- 1¼ cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- cherry reduction
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Grease and four two 9-inch baking pans. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Mix together the all-purpose flour, sugar, baking soda baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
- Mix the coffee, chocolate, and cocoa powder, it will be almost like a thin paste. Place in the refrigerator to cool. Once cooled. beat in the oil and eggs.
- Fold the flour mixture into the chocolate, then mix until it is full combined. Evenly divide the batter between the two cake pans.
- Bake for about 18 - 22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle. Cool for about 10 - 15 minutes. Remove from the cake pans and allow to finish cooling on a wire rack. (For the easiest time frosting, tightly cover the cakes and place in the freezer for a few hours, or overnight).
- Start on the cherry reduction. Add the cherries, sugar, and water to a saucepan and cook on medium high until reduced to a thick syrup with small chunks of cherry. It should be roughly ⅔ cup. Lightly crush the cherries as you cook. Optionally place the reduction in the food processor to crush up the cherries a bit more. Allow to cool to room temperature. This can be made ahead of time and brough to room temperature when you use it. It is okay if it is still slightly cool.
- Clean your bowl (it is best if you use the bowl of your stand mixer) and whisk for the swiss meringue buttercream and thoroughly dry. Place a small pot on the stove with about an inch of water. Heat the water until steaming, but not boiling. Place the bowl over the pot.
- Add your egg whites and sugar. to the mixing bowl and whisk constantly until the sugar is dissolved.
- Put the mixing bowl back into your stand mixer and whip until stiff peaks form. Add in the butter one tablespoon at a time and mix well between each addition. The mixture may separate and that is okay, it will usually come back together over time. If not, place it in the refrigerator for an hour and then start mixing again.
- Fold in the cherry reduction ¼ cup at a time.
- Cut the edges of the cakes and cut both cakes in half to create four cake layers. Brush the tops with the cherry liqueur.
- Top each of the layers with the buttercream and layer the cakes on top of one another. Smooth out any frosting that sticks out from the cake with an offset spatula.
- Top with fresh cherries for garnish.