An almost Sacher Torte

Last Tuesday night my mom celebrated her bday. She threw a party for about 40 people and I was in charge for cakes! The menu itself was simple but very typical of our region: they started with a selection of cold cuts, such as mortadella, sopressa and prosciutto; hot home-made bread and some stracchino (a fresh cheese that melts perfectly on hot buns!!). The main course was a mix of hare and pheasant, with polenta as a side. I am not really big on this kind of food, but it is good to have it sometimes just to experiment new tastes.

Anyway, back to the cakes…I made three of them, plus some guests brought cupcakes and tiramisù (it would not be an Italian party without it Lol). My very first idea was to make a real Sachertorte, a delicious, fine, moist very chocolaty cake that is one of the famous historic foods from Wien, the capital of Austria. But, as long as I didn’t have enough chocolate for all the cakes I wanted to bake, I just slightly changed the recipe making a dough with cocoa instead (using Martha’s Stewart Chocolate Cake’s recipe). It turned out a wonderful, not that heavy, Almost Sacher Torte!

A new post concerning the second cake I baked for this occasion will come soon…

ALMOST SACHER TORTE

Prep Time: 1hr + cooling           Cooking Time: about 35 min

Ingredients:
Cake:
– 2 sticks/ 225gr unsalted butter
– 2 cups/ 200gr all-purpose flour
– 1/2 cup/ 60gr unsweetened cocoa powder
– 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 1 1/2 cups/ 300gr sugar
– 2 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks
– 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
– 1 cup/ 240ml low-fat buttermilk*
– 8-9 tbsp home made apricot jam
*To make your home-made buttermilk add three parts yogurt, 1 part milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice. Stir and set aside for 5 minutes.
Icing:
– 5.2 oz/ 150gr dark chocolate
– 1 tablespoon oil
– 1 cup/ 200gr sugar
– 1/2 cup/ 240ml water
Steps:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/ 180°C. Grease and flour two 8-by-2-inch (20cm diameter) cake pans, tapping out excess flour. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in vanilla. Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until combined.
  3. Divide batter between pans; smooth tops. Bake until cakes pull away from sides of pans, 32 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.
  4. Place one cake, bottom side up, on a cake stand. Tuck strips of parchment paper underneath. Using an offset-spatula or table knife, spread top with apricot jam. Top with remaining cake;
  5. Make the chocolate icing. Melt the chocolate in bain-marie or double boiler and stir in the oil. Bring the sugar and water to a boil. A spoonful at a time, stir the cooled sugar solution into the melted chocolate until you have a smooth mixture.
  6. With the cake on a wire rack, pour chocolate glaze around edges to cover the sides. Fill in the center. Tap the wire rack to pop any bubbles.
  7. Chill while still on the wire rack until the chocolate glaze is set. Remove from the wire rack and trim the bottom. Place on a cake board or plate and serve with some whipped cream.
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