Forget your diet on Sachertorte Day! Such is its ability to alleviate woes, create good vibes, impart feelings of luxurious decadence and make special occasions special, that it should have an entire week/month dedicated to it. Yes, Sachertorte deserves more than just a day! Look at it, say it: the word itself is magic: Sachertorte! Just writing it on your shopping list is a prelude to festivity, indulgence and culinary delight. Admire and desire its dark wanton voluptuousness as it poses seductively on the plate beckoning you to enter its world of sin. Impossible to resist! This is hardcore temptation at its most muscular level. Close your eyes as you take that first bite: turn-of-the-century Vienna pervades the senses, you can almost hear a Strauss waltz… Long live Sachertorte Day!
The History of Sachertorte Day
This world-famous chocolate cake owes its origins to apprentice chef Franz Sacher, who created it for the guests of Austrian Chancellor Klemens von Metternich in 1832. Sacher was in fact filling in for the head chef, who had fallen ill, when he had this stroke of genius. When it was served up, the guests loved it, and the Chancellor himself was impressed. Still, it took years for Sachertorte to become one of the most famous and beloved desserts on the planet. Sacher eventually settled in his hoemtown of Vienna and continued his culinary endavours there. A well-deserved danke, Herr Sacher!
How to Celebrate Sachertorte Day
How could we possibly celebrate Sachertorte day…? By having some, of course! And if you have the time and enjoy culinary challenges, perhaps you’d like to try your hand at making your very own Sachertorte from scratch? It is not as difficult as one might think. In fact, the hardest part is attempting to let it sit for a day or two without eating it, allowing all of the flavors to soak into each other.
150g dark chocolate
150g unsalted butter, softened
120g white sugar
1/2 teaspoon real vanilla extract
5 eggs, separated
90g finely ground almonds
60g all-purpose flour
For the topping and the icing:
6 tablespoons apricot jam, strained
150g dark chocolate
200ml double cream
30g milk chocolate
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease and flour deep 23cm/9in round cake tin. Melt the chocolate gently in a double-boiler, stirring from time to time, then cool. Beat the butter in a bowl until soft, then slowly add the sugar until the mixture is fluffy. Add the cooled chocolate and the vanilla extract and beat again to create a smooth mixture. Add the egg yolks, the ground almonds and the flour. Whisk the egg whites in another bowl until stiff. Add about a third of them to the chocolate mixture and mix in energetically. Then, gently fold in the remaining egg whites. Pour your batter into the prepared cake pan and bake in the oven for about 45-50 minutes. Leave the cake to cool in the pan before removing.
To make the topping, heat the apricot jam in a small pan and then brush evenly over the top and sides of the cooled cake. Set aside. Lastly, make the icing by breaking the dark chocolate into pieces. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until hot (taking care not to burn it), and then remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate has melted, then cool till the mixture achieves a coating consistency. Pour this icing on to the centre of the cake and spread it over the top and down the sides, slowly and gently, and then leave to set. Serve with unsweetened whipped cream.