This is NOT a fast cake, so DO NOT WAIT until right before you need it. It tastes better if it can sit more than one night before serving it. It it time consuming, but totally worth it in my estimation. Besides, what better reason to have Port and Kirsch on hand?
1 lb 4 oz can of TART RED Cherries
1/2 C Port
1 Tbsp Kirsch
3 drops almond extract
Combine and chill for 4 hours
3 oz semisweet chocolate (I use the Bakers' Friend brand of squares)
3 Tbsp Kirsch
1 beaten egg
1 C whipping cream
2 Tbsp sugar
Melt the chocolate and Kirsch together over low heat (using a double boiler is best) until smooth. Add the beaten egg to the chocolate. Whip the cream and sugar together and FOLD into the chocolate mixture. Chill 2 hours
2 egg whites
1/2 C sugar
1 C milk (set aside 1/2 C to mix with chocolate)
2 egg yolks
2 oz semisweet chocolate
SIFT together :
1 3/4 C flour
1 C sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Melt chocolate, egg yolks, and 1/2 C of milk together and cool slightly.
Beat egg whites until they form soft peaks. Gradually add the sugar and beat until mixture forms peaks. Mix together the dry ingredients, oil, 1/2 C of milk and chocolate mixture until smooth. FOLD in egg whites.
Bake cake in round pans, greased and lightly floured at 350 for 30 min. Cool in pans for 10 min and remove. Allow to cool thoroughly. Split each cake into 2 layers after completely cooled.
6 Tbsp butter
1 lb Confectioners' sugar (powdered)
1/4 C CREAM
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 ounces UNSWEETENED chocolate melted
Cream butter, add sugar and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Fold in chocolate.
TO ASSEMBLE THE CAKE -
Spread 1/2 C of frosting over the bottom layer, and use the other 1/2 C to form a ridge, or wall about 1/2 inch wide and 3/4 inch high, AND a 2nd ridge about 2 inches in from the side of the cake. CHILL FOR 30 MINUTES.
Fill the spaces with the cherry mixture.
Place 2nd layer, and spread the mousse evenly. CHILL FOR 30 MINUTES
Whip an additional 2 C of cream with 2 Tbsp of sugar and 1 tsp of Vanilla.
Place 3rd layer on top. Spread 1 1/2 C of cream over 3rd layer, leaving about 1/4 C to "frost" the remainder.
Place 4th layer and frost with about 1/4 C of whipped cream.
Sift some confectioners' sugar over the top, make whipped cream "dollops" around edge, and in center of cake. Add some fresh cherries to dollops, and make chocolate curls or shavings.