Umami Recipes
Umami Recipes

AVACYN'S BIRTHDAY CAKE

1 cake

servings

2 hours

active time

26 hours

total time

Ingredients

Cherry Filling

2 tablespoons water

⅛ cup sugar

3 tablespoons kirsch

1 lb cherries, pitted and cut in half

Chocolate Shards

5 ounces dark chocolate, chopped

Chocolate Cake

2 % cups cake flour

¾ cup cocoa powder

2 teaspoons instant coffee powder

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 ½ cups sugar

2 whole eggs

2 egg whites

1 tablespoon vanilla paste

2 teaspoons kirsch

1 cup sour cream

½ cup heavy cream

Whipped Cream Frosting

3 cups heavy cream

1 tablespoon kirsch

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon agar-agar

1 cup confectioners' sugar

Topping

Fresh cherries

Directions

Cherry Filling

The night before, combine water and sugar. Bring to a boil. Add kirsch and cherries. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.

Transfer to an airtight container and allow to cool. Let sit in the refrigerator at least overnight, up to 2 weeks.

Before using the cherries as a filling, place in a fine mesh strainer to remove excess syrup from the cherries.

Note: This will help prevent the filling section from becoming too wet and causing the whipped cream to lose its volume.

Chocolate Shards

The night before, place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave until it melts, about 45 seconds in total. Make sure to mix it a few times during the heating process so none of it burns.

Transfer the melted chocolate to a large sheet of parchment paper and spread out into a thin rectangle. Take the edge of the parchment paper and roll over the chocolate, making sure the chocolate is not touching.

Place in the refrigerator until you are going to decorate.

Once ready to decorate, lightly press the paper to create a few cracks in the chocolate. Unroll completely to reveal the chocolate shards. Make sure to keep this cool to prevent the chocolate from melting.

Chocolate Cake

Preheat an oven to 350°F. Prepare two 8-inch cake pans and spray the insides with nonstick spray. Carefully line each with parchment paper.

Combine the cake flour, cocoa powder, instant coffee powder, baking powder, and salt in a bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the butter and sugar and mix until smooth. Add the eggs, egg whites, vanilla paste, and kirsch.

Add half of the dry ingredients into the large bowl and mix well. Add the sour cream and heavy cream. Mix until smooth. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Split the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans. Lift each of the pans and bang lightly on the counter to remove any large air bubbles. Place in the oven and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick test comes out clean.

Allow to rest for 5 minutes and then remove from the pan onto a cooling rack. Make sure to remove the parchment paper from the cakes and allow them to cool fully, at least 1 hour of resting time.

Whipped Cream Frosting

Combine heavy cream, kirsch, vanilla extract, agar-agar, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer set with the whisk attachment. Whip on high speed until medium peaks form. If you aren't ready to assemble the cake, cover the frosting bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator.

Topping

Once the cake layers have fully cooled, level both layers by cutting the top bump with a serrated knife. Brush the cut sides of the cake with the cherry syrup. Place one of the layers on your serving plate, cut side up.

Add about ½ inch of frosting on top and spread evenly.

Add the cherry filling in the center, spreading it close to the edge but not completely. Cover the filling with additional frosting

Top with the other layer of cake, cut side down. If you still have cherry syrup left, brush the top side with it.

Prepare a piping bag with a large round decorating tip.

Transfer a small portion of the whipped cream frosting into the piping bag. Completely cover the cake with the remaining whipped cream frosting. To get nice smooth sides, position an offset spatula edge against the side and rotate the cake around.

Take the prepared piping bag and make little whipped cream dollops around the top of the cake. Take fresh cherries and place on top of each of the dollops. Carefully press the chocolate shards to the side of the cake. Let the cake sit covered in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before cutting into it. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

1 cake

servings

2 hours

active time

26 hours

total time
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