A trifle (trī'fəl) is a delicious dessert which can be made in many different flavor combinations. This recipe for black forest trifle is a layered arrangement of chocolate cake, black cherries and whipped cream. Trifles are traditionally served in a glass bowl so all the layers can be seen. This is a terrific dessert for a holiday or special occasion not only because of the delicious taste, but also because of the attractive presentation. Most black forest cake recipes call for Kirsch, a cherry flavored brandy. Instead of having you buy a bottle of Kirsch, I've included directions for how you can "make your own" by combining cherry juice and brandy. If you happen to have Kirsch in the house or would prefer to buy some, you can do so and skip this step. This recipe calls for baker's chocolate to garnish the dessert. It comes in an 8 ounce box, and can be found in the baking aisle at the grocery store. Inside the box are individually wrapped one ounce squares.
1 (18.25 ounce)Devil's Food Chocolate Cake Mix or make your own chocolate cake
2 (15 ounce) cans pitted Bing Cherries
1/4 cup brandy
3 cups heavy whipping cream
2/3 cup powdered sugar
14 maraschino cherries, well drained
1 (1 ounce)square semi sweet baking chocolate
1. Drain the juice from the canned cherries into a 1 cup measuring cup, add the brandy and stir.
2. Prepare cake as directed (except substitute 1/4cup of the water needed for 1/4 cup of the cherry/brandy juice) and Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes in a 10"x15" glass pan. Let cool and cut into 1" cubes.
3. Meanwhile, soak the drained black cherries in the remaining cherry/brandy juice (what is left after 1/4 cup has been used for the cake).
4. When you are ready to serve, or up to 1 hour before serving, drain the cherries (save the juice) and make the whipped cream. The whipped cream is made by pouring the heavy whipping cream in a bowl and using a stand mixer or hand mixer to whip the cream. When it is almost whipped, and forms stiff peaks, add the sugar and continue to whip for another minute to blend. Reserve 3/4 cup of the whipped cream to use for the top of the trifle
5. Assemble the trifle in the following manner in a large glass serving bowl or trifle bowl:
-In the bottom place 1/3 of the cubed cake. Sprinkle 1-2 Tablespoons of the cherry/brandy on top
-next add 1/3 of the whipped cream
- then add 1/3 of the drained cherries
Repeat these layers 2 more times ending with the reserved whipped cream
5. Place the maraschino cherries on top and use a vegetable grater to finely grate a portion of the semi-sweet chocolate on top of the cherries.