Total Time
3hrs 1min
Prep 1 min
Cook 3 hrs

In these charlottes, pieces of buttered Challah bread are transformed into delicate containers for a cherry and chocolate filling. You might wonder why you need to freeze the chocolate filling before baking them. The coldness prevents the chocolate from overcooking in the oven.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 23 cup dried sour cherries
  • 14 cup kirsch
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 -3 drops almond extract
  • 12 cup heavy cream
  • 3 12 ounces fine quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped (not unsweetened)
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 12 lbs fresh challah or 1 12 lbs brioche bread, sliced 1/2 inch thick


  1. Bring cherries, kirsch, and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring occasionally.
  2. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, 15 minutes.
  3. Stir in almond extract.
  4. Heat cream, chocolate, and a pinch of salt in another small heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring, until chocolate is melted and smooth, about 3 minutes.
  5. REmove from heat and add 1 TBS butter, stirring until incorporated, then stir in cooked cherries with any liquid.
  6. Transfer to a metal bowl and freeze, stirring occasionally, until firm, but not frozen solid, about 2 hours.
  7. Preheat oven to 350*F.
  8. Cut out 12, 2 inch rounds from bread slices with a cookie cutter,then cut 42 (2 by 1 1/2 inch) rectangles from trimmings and remaining slices.
  9. Spread 1 side of each round and rectangle with some of the remaining butter.
  10. Put 6 rounds, buttered sides down, into 6 (5 to 6 oz) charlotte molds, or ramekins, and line sides with rectangles (5 to 7 per mold), buttered sides against mold, arranging them vertically and slightly overlapping, pressing gently to adhere.
  11. Trim any overhang flush with rims.
  12. Divide filling among molds and top with 6 remaining bread rounds, buttered sides up, pressing gently to fit inside bread rim.
  13. Bake charlottes in molds on a baking sheet in middle of oven until bread is golden, about 25 minutes.
  14. Cool 5 minutes, then invert plates over charlottes and invert onto plates.
  15. Serve warm with lightly sweetened whipped cream.