A classic from German cuisine and one of the most fashionable desserts in the 1980s – Black Forest cake has managed to stay on many people’s list of top favourite through the years since the main ingredients, bitter chocolate, rich cream and sour cherries can never go out of fashion.

To me Black Forest cake brings the happiness and comfort of meeting an old friend, of flying a kite on a breezy day in early Spring or of suddenly seeing the ice cream cart turn into my street on a hot summer evening. Yes, a pure, innocent, unadulterated joy!

Over the years, other than baking the cake itself, I’ve tried to incorporate the basic flavour combination in many of my recipes. If you have been a reader of my blog for sometime, maybe you remember the Black Forest shake recipe that I created last summer. Mini Black Forest trifle desserts is what I make when I crave my favourite cake but also want a sweet fix in a hurry.

Instead of baking three tier cake, and wait a whole day soaking the it with syrup, I make my quick n easy dark chocolate brownies to use for the cake layers. The traditional recipe uses kirsch, a cherry flavoured liquor, which I substitute with cherry or red grape juice in my recipe. All that is left to do now is make the layers in small glasses with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream and cherry pie filling.

If you have a few brownies left in the fridge but not enough to serve on their own, this mini Black Forest trifle is something you can assemble in minutes to wow your guests or make the weekend evening super special for your family. I love mini desserts for how chic and elegant they look and how easy they are to put together. And of course the portion size stays in check too.

-If you want to make your own cherry pie filling, combine 4 cups of pitted red cherries and 1 cup sugar with 1/4 cup water. Cook on medium heat till the cherries release their juice and sugar is melted. Add 1/4 cup corn starch or 3-4 tablespoons cornflour diluted in a little water. Cook till the sauce is thick and glossy.

-I baked my brownies from scratch, if you are using store bought ones, it will definitely cut the time.

-Don’t forget to moisten the brownies because it makes all the difference to taste and texture. And be generous about it.

-With brownies for the chocolate layer, my personal preference is vanilla ice cream rather than whipped cream.

Click here for my Black Forest Chocolate Shake .


1 cup chocolate, 70% dark
1 cup softened butter
1 cup plain flour
1 cup caster sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
3 eggs or 3 bananas
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 tin cherry pie filling
3/4 cup cherry or red grape juice
2 cups whipped cream or vanilla ice cream
1/2 cup grated dark chocolate

This Is What You Do:

Preheat oven at 170 C. Grease and flour a 8×8 inch square pan.

Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler or in the microwave at 15 seconds intervals till silky smooth.

Add in both the sugars and mix.

Add the flour and stir. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix to combine everything.

Pour the mixture in the prepared baking pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Let the brownies cool. Meanwhile assemble all the ingredients for the trifle and whip the cream if using whipped cream instead of ice cream.

To assemble the trifles, take 6 small glasses. Break brownies into big chunks.

Layer the brownies at the bottom of the glasses, moisten them with cherry or grape syrup.

Pour some cherry pie filling over them. Then layer with whipped cream or ice cream.
Repeat another time with brownies, cherry juice, cherry pie filling and finally whipped cream or ice cream on top.

Make them pretty with a cheery on top from the pie filling and sprinkle with grated or shaved dark chocolate.

Serve immediately.

Serves 6

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