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I learned to make this from a wonderful Welsh woman who was an incredible cook. She taught me many things - this was one of my favorite desserts.
- 6 tablespoons clarified butter
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups sifted cake flour
- 1 1⁄3 cups fine sugar
- 8 large eggs
- 2 (1 lb) cans dark sweet cherries, in their juice (not in syrup!)
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1⁄4 cup ruby port
- 1 slice lemon (1/4" thick)
WHITE CHOCOLATE MOUSSE
- 9 ounces white chocolate, melted
- 5 tablespoons water
- 1 1⁄2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 3 large egg whites
- shaved white chocolate, garnish
- shaved dark chocolate, garnish
- Make the cake: Oven to 350 degrees F.
- Line the bottom of (2) 9" round pans with parchment.
- Combine the clarified butter and vanilla in a small bowl.
- Set aside somewhere warm (you want the butter to stay melted).
- Combine the flour with 6 tbl.
- of the sugar and sift TWICE.
- Set aside.
- In the mixer, combine the eggs and rest of the sugar.
- Place the mixing bowl in a large pan of hot (not boiling, very hot tap water is good) water, and mix with your hand (kids love this part) until the eggs are warm (body temp).
- Return the bowl to the mixer and whip on high speed until cool, light and at the ribbon stage (when you lift the beaters, ribbons of batter fall back into the bowl and don't disappear very quickly).
- Now, everyone says to use a rubber spatula, but I find it much easier to use my hand to do this next part.
- Sprinkle about 1/3 of the flour onto the eggs and quickly and gently fold into the batter.
- Fold in half the remaining, then the rest.
- Take about a handful of the batter and mix into the small bowl of butter and vanilla until well combined.
- Gently fold that back into the batter.
- Divide between the pans and bake about 25 to 30 minutes- the cakes should BEGIN to shrink away from the side of the pans.
- Remove from oven, let cool about 10 minutes in the pan then turn out onto a flat surface and let cool completely before peeling off the parchment.
- Set aside.
- Make the cherry filling: (Since it's not cherry season, I'm giving you my version using canned cherries.) Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook over low heat until the liquid becomes heavy and syrupy.
- Take of heat and let stand until cool.
- Make the mousse: Melt the chocolate and water in the microwave at 30% power for 2 minutes.
- Stir until smooth.
- Let cool.
- Whip the cream until soft peaks form, not too stiff.
- Set aside.
- Wipe your mixing bowl out with a dash of vinegar.
- Add the whites and whip until stiff, but not dry.
- Fold one fourth of the whites into the white chocolate.
- Scrape the remaining whites and whipped cream on top of the chocolate and fold together.
- Chill until needed.
- TO ASSEMBLE THE TRIFLE: Slice each cake in half.
- Discard one layer.
- Put about 1 cup of the mousse in the bottom of your serving dish (preferably a see-through trifle dish or bowl so you can see all the pretty layers).
- Place one slice of cake on top and press down lightly so it lays even in the dish.
- Ladle some of the cherry syrup onto the cake so it soaks in.
- Put about 1 1/2- 2 c.
- mousse on top and top with half the cherries.
- Place another cake layer on top, and repeat.
- place the last layer of cake on top and using a cake circle press down evenly so all the layers are even and look pretty through the sides of the bowl.
- Sprinkle the remaining cherry syrup over top of the cake layer and top with remaining mousse.
- Decorate with shaved white and dark chocolate.
- Refrigerate until service.
- **NOTE:If you have some home canned cherries, use them, they will be so much better.
- If you have access to fresh cherries at any time simply use 1 lb.
- of them, and poach them in red wine or port, sugar and the lemon slice.