Chocolate and cherry ... quite possibly the best combination on earth. This recipe may not include the alcohol-soaked cherries and Kirschwasser of a true Black Forest cake, but it's definitely not lacking in flavor. Some might say that chocolate mousse is not a component of a true Black Forest cake, but it should be! This combination of chocolate cake, chocolate mousse, cherries, and coconut whipped cream is going to win you over — we promise.

Black Forest Chocolate Mousse Cake [Vegan]

Serves

5

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Ingredients

For the Chocolate Cake:

  • 3/4 cup, plus 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon teaspoon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 1/3 cup Dutch process or regular cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons ground flax seeds
  • 4 tablespoons hot water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Chocolate Mousse:

  • 4 ounces vegan semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons hot water or brewed coffee
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup aquafaba (liquid from a can of chickpeas)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 15-ounce can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight

For the Topping:

 
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Preparation

To Make the Cake:

  1. Read notes prior to beginning.
  2. Combine ground flax seeds with the 4 tablespoons of hot water and whisk smooth.
  3. Let stand for at least 5 minutes to thicken to a paste.
  4. Combine the melted coconut oil, 3/4 cup boiling water, and cocoa powder together and whisk smooth.
  5. Add the flax meal and the vanilla extract, then whisk smooth.
  6. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda with the salt into the chocolate mixture and whisk smooth.
  7. Pour batter into a greased and parchment-lined 1/4 sheet cake pan (or a 9x13-inch pan) and bake immediately in a preheated 350°F oven for approximately 18-20 minutes or until it springy to the touch when you gently press the center.
  8. Cool cake in the pan for about 20 minutes while you prepare the chocolate mousse recipe.

To Make the Chocolate Mousse:

  1. Reduce the aquafaba by bringing it to a boil in a small sauce pan, let it boil for 3 minutes. Cool completely in the refrigerator.
  2. Meanwhile, open the can of coconut milk that has been refrigerated overnight and carefully scoop out the fat that is on top and place in a mixer with a whip attachment. Use the coconut liquid for something else (like a smoothie or a recipe that calls for coconut water)
  3. Whip the coconut cream to stiff peaks and reserve in the refrigerator.
  4. Melt the chocolate in a large bowl over a double boiler or in a microwave-safe bowl.
  5. Add the warm brewed coffee to the melted chocolate all at once while whisking vigorously to incorporate well.
  6. Whip the cold aquafaba to stiff peaks while adding the sugar and cream of tartar.
  7. Take a small portion of the aquafaba meringue and fold into the chocolate mixture to lighten.
  8. Fold the whipped coconut cream into the mousse then refrigerate the entire mixture until it is firm or until needed.

To Assemble:

  1. To assemble, line each cake ring with a food-grade acetate strip. Start by cutting circles of cake that are the exact same size as the ring.
  2. Add a cake circle to the very bottom of the ring. Follow with cherry pie filling, a layer of chocolate mousse, and then repeat until done. Do not overfill.
  3. Set in the freezer for at least 30 minutes, then remove your cake from the rings. Top each cake with whipped coconut cream and a cherry.
  4. See notes about cake sizes if you want to make a full cake.
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Notes

To make individual cakes, you need stainless steel cake rings or 2 1/2-inch PVC pipes that can be found at most hardware stores. Line each pipe with food-grade acetate strip. You could also make the cake in a 7-inch cake pan.

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