On the Bavarian side of my family, as far back as I can remember, birthdays were celebrated with Sacher Torte, a silky chocolate cake topped with a thin film of apricot jam and a chocolate glaze. The first thing I did when I went to Vienna was to take my daughter Daniela for a real Sacher Torte with schlag (whipped cream).
- NOTE: To make this cake kosher for Passover—and gluten-free—use potato starch rather than flour.
- 1stick unsalted butter, pareve margarine, or coconut oil, at room temperature
- ½cup sugar
- 8ounces semisweet (60 or 70%), high-quality chocolate (I prefer the 70% sweet. You can also use bittersweet or semisweet chocolate.)
- 1teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2tablespoons Sabra Coffee liqueur or rum
- 6large eggs, separated
- ½cup potato starch (or 1 cup cake flour)
- ¼teaspoon salt
- 1cup commercial or homemade apricot jam (recipe below)
- Chocolate glaze (recipe below)
- Whipped cream (optional)
Yield: 8-12 servings
- Step 1
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Grease and line a 9-inch round cake or spring form pan with parchment paper.
- Step 2
Cream the butter, margarine, or coconut oil in the bowl of a standing mixer with the paddle attachment. Add the sugar and mix until fluffy.
- Step 3
Add the egg yolks, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition.
- Step 4
Melt the chocolate with the liqueur in a double boiler, then cool slightly and stir in the vanilla. Add the chocolate to the butter-sugar mixture and blend well.
- Step 5
Sift the cake flour or potato starch with the salt, then stir into the chocolate mixture.
- Step 6
Beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry in the standing mixer with the whisk attachment. You know the whites are done if you can hold the bowl upside down and the whites do not fall out. Fold the whites gently into the chocolate mixture until just incorporated.
- Step 7
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Step 8
Cool the cake for a few minutes in the pan. Put three pieces of parchment paper on a serving platter so each piece overlaps the other slightly in the middle. When the cake is slightly cooled but still warm, slide a knife around the edges of the cake to loosen the sides from the pan. Flip the cake onto the prepared serving platter, so the bottom is now the top.
- Step 9
Spread the apricot jam on the top of the cake with a metal cake spatula. Then pour the chocolate glaze evenly over the cake, spreading the glaze onto the sides. Allow to cool completely before serving. Carefully remove the parchment paper from the platter, making sure you lick the glaze that has run down onto the paper. Serve alone or with a dollop of schlag (whipped cream).