Bake Off Style Black Cherry Gateau

Black Cherry Gateau , three-layer sponge with cream and black cherry filling and topping
Credit: Princes

The Great British Bake Off is at the halfway point! The next episode is set to include elegant bakes with many layers, a technical task that will test bakers’ ability to pull off delicate assembly and decoration in a show-stopping cake.

So why not have a go yourself with this not-too-daunting, but very impressive, Black Cherry Gateau?

Serves 8
Preparation time: 40min
Cooking time: 8-9 min

  1. Preheat oven to Gas Mark 7, 220°C, Fan 200°C. Grease two 18cm sandwich tins with a little vegetable oil and line the bases with circles of baking paper.
  2. Using a hand-held electric mixer, whisk eggs and sugar together in a large bowl until very pale and light in texture. This will take about 5min on full power. To check mixture is thick enough, lift the beaters (switched off) – they should leave a trail for a few seconds.
  3. Sift flour and cocoa together. Add to the mixture and fold in gently but thoroughly, using a large metal spoon. Divide mixture between the tins and level the tops.
  4. Bake for 8-9min until firm and springy to the touch. Turn onto a cooling rack. Cover with a clean damp tea towel and leave until cold.
  5. Remove lining paper. Using a bread knife, slice through the cakes horizontally. (You will be using three of the layers).
  6. Whip cream in a chilled bowl until it holds its shape. Reserve one-third for decoration. Share remaining cream between two of the cakes, spreading evenly over the surface.
  7. Reserve 8 cherries from the Princes Black Cherry Fruit Filling for decoration. Put the rest of the Fruit Filling into a large sieve to remove some of the sauce, then spoon the cherries onto the cream-topped cakes. Layer the cakes on top of each other, then place a third cake on top.
  8. Spread a thin layer of cream over the top cake, then sprinkle over grated chocolate. Pipe 8 swirls of cream onto the cake (or use heaped teaspoons), then put a cherry on top of each swirl.
  9. Keep chilled until half an hour before serving.