A delicious fine moist very chocolaty cake that is one of the
historic foods from Wien (Vienna), the capital of Austria.
- Whisk up an egg white & sugar foam.
- Whisk up butter & sugar foam.
- Mix the foams together with flour, yolks & lots of
- Fill with apricot jam.
- Coat with a chocolate & sugar syrup glaze.
- Takes approximately: 30 min work, 80 min
cooking, 180 min
|Dark Eating Chocolate
|Dark Eating Chocolate
Note that chocolate appears twice in the list (in both the
cake & the
glaze) making 275 g in total.
Oven. 2 mixing bowls. Electric whisk (or hand one if you have
lots of time).
Knife. Scales (or just estimate). Microwave oven with microwaveable
bowl (or a
hob & saucepan but that is more hassle). Round cake tin
push-out bottom) about 20 cm diameter & 10 cm
high. A cup (or
similar as temporary egg yolk container). Baking paper (or reusable equivalent).
- Split each of the 6 eggs putting the whites in a mixing bowl. (This is
the stage that
requires most care. Split each egg three ways: into yolk, white
Discard the shells of course. Err on the side of purity of the egg
even a minute amount of fatty egg yolk in the whites mixture can
reduce their ability to foam when whisked but a little white in the
mixture causes no problem.)
- The cake body:
- The egg white foam:
- Put the egg whites in a mixing bowl.
- Whisk until fairly stiff & foamy. (Do not
get any fat in this mix from
the yolks, butter or chocolate because it will go flat.)
- Add three quarters (150 g) of the sugar.
- Whisk until fully stiff & foamy. (It is the
air in this which inflates
the cake so make sure there are as many little bubbles in there as
- The butter foam:
- Give the 100 g of butter a short blast in the microwave to
get up to soft, but not
molten state (not vital but it saves time whisking & deters the
firing out lumps of butter across the kitchen).
- Put the remaining 50 g of sugar in a mixing bowl.
- Add the 100 g of butter.
- Add some vanilla flavouring.
- Put the first load (125 g) of chocolate in the microwave
bowl & melt the
chocolate in the microwave.
- Meanwhile, return to the butter/sugar mix &
whisk until it goes pale
& creamy looking.
- Add the egg yolks.
- Add the molten chocolate.
- Gently (not whisking because whisking something
this sloppy would knock the
bubble back out) mix the ingredients in the bowl.
- Add the 125 g of plain flour to the butter/yolk/sugar mixture via a
sieve (because lumps
of white flour show up badly in this brown cake).
- Add the whites foam to the butter/yolk/sugar/flour
mixture (not the other
way around or you will have two horribly greasy bowls to wash up
- Mix very gently folding the ingredients together
(actually it does not
matter if the mixing is imperfect because the resulting marbled effect
attractive, although definitely not traditional, but ensure the heavy
does not all end up at the bottom of the bowl because it end up in the
of the cake making that bit too dense to cook fully before the top
- Line the cake tin with greaseproof paper.
- Fill cake tin with the mix.
- Bake at 170°C (Gas Mark 3.5) for about 70 min.
- Allow to cool in the tin (so it does not slop)
upsidedown (so that the more
noticeable top of the cake ends up flat at the expense of the bottom)
room temperature (about 30 min).
- The filling:
- Microwave the 150 g of apricot jam until it melts.
- Cut the cake body in half horizontally & place
the halves with inner
(cut) faces uppermost.
- Pour the molten jam onto both halves of the cake.
- Allow it to soak in.
- Reassemble the cake.
- Allow the surface to cool again.
- The glaze:
- Microwave the 150 g of golden syrup (NB: 150 g of syrup
is about 100 ml
and therefore about 5 heaped dessertspoonfuls.) & the remaining
150 g of chocolate
together until the syrup just starts to bubble (it does not need not be quite this hot
but the first bubble is a convenient temperature indicator). Do not let the mixture
seriously boil as that cooks the chocolate causing the glaze to go grainy.
- Stir it until they are smoothly mixed.
- Allow it to cool to about 25°C.
- It should now be spreadable and able to support a
thickness of about
2 mm on a vertical surface (test on the wall of the bowl) yet
shiny soon after being spread. If it is too hard or soft, add more
or chocolate and go back to the microwaving stage. (The exact amount of
needed depends on the sugariness of the chocolate. About equal weight
& chocolate for normal UK plain eating chocolate (which is 50%
solids) but more syrup if using darker (e.g. 70%) chocolate.)
- Spread cake body with the glaze.
- Leave it to set.
The cake is quite long lasting, especially before its protective
glaze is breached, and can easily remain at (normal UK) room
temperature for a week before use. However it also freezes well:
- Frozen, it will keep fine for months with the only noticeable damage being sometimes a loss of sheen
to the glaze.
freeze it, simply put it still on its plate in a freezer without the
touching anything else. Once solid the frozen cake (plus plate) is
robust and can simply be wrapped in a carrier bag and returned to the
freezer casually stacked with other frozen goods. To defrost it, take
it out the freezer, remove the bag, cover it with an upturned bowl(not touching the
cake) or similar to keep dirt off and leave it at
room temperature for several hours. Microwaving on full power does not
work as well because the glaze melts and runs off before the cake body defrosts.
- To transport it I usually just put a bowl over the cake and put the
plate, cake & bowl in carrier bag. Tying the top of the bag holds
the bowl protectively over cake and the remaining handle tops provide a
carrying point that
reduces tipping of the cake - I have even cycled to parties with a cake
hanging from my bike's handlebars like that with never having damaged
the cakes in the process. If travelling for a longer time then simply
pack it up like that still frozen as the frozen state will give it more
protection initially and it can defrost ready for use in transit.
you know whilst you are making the cake you are going to be freezing it
then freezing it before glazing it makes it easier to glaze, it being
harder. It also means you can postpone glazing if you run out of
- 'Sachertorte' is not pronounced (English phonetic)
"s-a-sh-er-t-or-t" but more like "z-a-kh-u-t-or-r-t-uh" where 'kh' is
similar to the 'ch' in 'loch' in English & 'uh' is the neutral
- To get the traditional perfectly cylindrical shape, trim
the cake body into
a circle with vertical edges & cut the top off flat before
wastes cake though so, if you are making the cake for its taste not its
appearance, don't bother. Getting the surface smooth from hollows saves on glaze though.
- Don't use white chocolate in the cake body because it is
unnoticeable by flavour & colour and leaving only the
- The 'dark eating chocolate' referred to is dark by UK
standards where the
archetypical dark chocolate is (what is now called) Cadbury's
Classic only about 38% chocolate solids. In countries (possibly soon
the UK where Bournville has recently been raised to 60%) where dark
means 70% or more, this recipe might need adjustment.
- The chicken eggs are UK size 'medium' which is about 60 g
(officially 53-63 g). If using eggs of a significantly different
size, adjust the number of eggs accordingly.
- Don't use self-raising flour. It creates large bubbles in
- Although the cake body is essentially a Savoy sponge with
lots of added
chocolate, don't describe it as such before someone tries it because
expect sponges to be light and fluffy and mistakenly think this has
wrong because, with of all that chocolate & jam, it is rich,
- If carried out in the order above, no tool should need to
be washed up more
is not very sticky so cheaper greaseproof paper (which is intended for
wrapping rather than as non-stick but often is reasonably non-stick
too) might be usable instead of baking paper. Alternatively the same baking paper can
be reused several times (saving repeated cutting to shape as well as
cost) if sponged down whilst washing up and left to dry.
- If taking to a party, do not use a plate to which you are
sentimentally attached, is expensive to replace or is needed to make up
a set. Often people want to hang on to the leftovers to eat later and
the glaze typically sticks them to the plate so they borrow the plate
too and frequently forget to return it.
- There are several other versions of Sachertorte. The one
from the Larousse
Gastronomique food encyclopaedia uses even more eggs in the cake and egg
cream in the glaze.
||23 MJ = 5500 kcal
(This is an approximation from adding up approximate values
Sachertorte was originally invented by Franz Sacher at the
This is a simplified version of a version of a
recipe based on one from the 'Sacher-Kochbuch' which I got
from a friend of
a friend. My main simplifications have been whipping the whites mixture
the yolks mixture to avoid getting fat in the egg white foam without
wash up the whisk twice and replacing a difficult boiled sugar-water
(slightly too little water causes the glaze to rapidly set and apply
whereas slightly too much water causes the glaze to take a day to set
off cake) with twrivially easy golden syrup. Three years after
I accidentally put most of the sugar in the first bowl, instead of
equally as intended, and found that both increased the egg white
reduced the butter whisking time so I incorporated that uneven sugar
in the recipe. Seven years after publishing this, I accidentally put
in before the whites foam instead of the other way around and it worked
(less mixing needed so loss of air from the foam) so I adapted the