Chef Dominic Hirst from The Cooking School at Dean Clough shares this week’s recipe - Chocolate Gateau with Cherries andKirsch (serves 10)

The Cooking School / Matthew Benson-Smith
The Cooking School / Matthew Benson-Smith

Another week, another sweet recipe. This time around for Chocolate Week.

This gâteau is a creamy, chocolatey delight and an impressive centrepiece for any celebration.

You could use creme de cassis instead of Kirsch, or for a non-alcoholic alternative, try a berry-flavoured syrup or a cherry or berry preserve.

For individual desserts you can cook the sponge in two Swiss roll trays and using a 6 cm cutter cut out individual discs and layer individually as per the method.

Ingredients

For the sponge

150g self-raising flour

30g cocoa

1 level tspoon baking powder

175g muscovado sugar

175g unsalted butter – softened

3 medium-sized eggs

For the filling

300ml double cream

125g Mascarpone cheese

2 tablespoons griottine cherries

35ml Kirsch liqueur

1 rounded tablespoon caster sugar

Icing sugar – for dusting

Equipment

- 2 x 20cm springform tins – greased and lined

- food processor

- large mixing bowl

- wooden spoon

- spatula

- sharp knife

- sieve

How to make it

1. Heat the oven to 180°C/ Gas Mark 4. Place all the sponge ingredients in the food

processor and blend until smooth.

2. Divide the mixture between the two tins and bake for 30 minutes or until the

cake springs back when lightly pressed. Cool on a cooling tray.

3. To make the filling, put the cream, Mascarpone, Kirsch and sugar in a large bowl. Whisk until the cream and Mascarpone are completely mixed together and have a thick whipped cream consistency. Gently fold the cherries through the cream mixture.

4. Using a sharp knife, make two horizontal slices across the cake, creating four sponge layers.

5. Place the bottom section of the cake on a serving plate and spread some of the filling over it.

6. Repeat with the remaining layers. Then top with the final layer of cake and dust it with icing sugar.