*  Exported from  MasterCook  *
                 Chocolate Cherry Torte 01 - Country Living
 Recipe By     : 
 Serving Size  : 10   Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : 
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
                         --DRIED CHERRY FILLING & COFFEE--
    1 1/4  Cup           Dried sour cherries (see note)
    1      cup           Water
    3      Tablespoon    Granulated sugar
    1      Tablespoon    Cornstarch
    3      Tablespoon    Marsala
    1      Teaspoon      Lemon juice
      1/3  Cup           Strong coffee
                         ---------CHOCOLATE CAKE-------
      1/4  Cup           Boiling water
      1/4  Cup           Unsweetened cocoa powder
      3/4  Cup           Granulated sugar
      1/3  Cup           Vegetable shortening
    2      lg            Eggs
    1      Teaspoon      Vanilla extract
    1 1/4  Cup           Cake flour
      1/2  Teaspoon      Salt
      1/2  Teaspoon      Baking powder
      1/4  Teaspoon      Baking soda
    6      Tablespoon    Buttermilk
                         ---CREAM-CHEESE FILLING---
    1      Package       (8-oz) cream cheese
      1/2  Cup           Confectioners' sugar
    1      Cup           (1/2 pint) heavy cream
                         Chocolate Meringue Twigs
                         (recipe follows)
   56      Inches        decorative ribbon
                         Fresh sweet cherries (opt.)
 1. Prepare Dried Cherry Filling: In small saucepan, combine dried cherries,
water, and 2 T sugar. Beat mixture to boiling over high heat; reduce heat to low
and simmer cherries until soft and liquid is reduced by half. Remove from heat
and transfer half 
 of cherry mixture to blender or food processor fitted with chopping blade;
process until a chunky puree forms. Return pureed mixture to saucepan with
remaining dried cherry mixture; add cornstarch and stir until well blended. Heat
mixture to boiling, sti
 rring constantly; cook until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1 T Marsala
and the lemon juice. Cool to room temperature. 
 2. Prepare Coffee Syrup: Combine coffee with remaining T sugar and 2 T Marsala;
set aside. 
 3. Prepare Chocolate Cake: In small bowl, stir boiling water and cocoa until
smooth; set aside to cool to room temperature. Heat oven to 350'F. Grease a 15
1/2 by 10 1/2-inch jelly-roll pan and line with waxed paper; grease and flour
 4. In large bowl, with electric mixer at medium speed, beat sugar and shortening
until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in
vanilla and cooled cocoa mixture. 
 5. Into small bowl, sift flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add flour
mixture to shortening mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating until batter
is smooth. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan and bake 18 to 20 minutes or
until center spri
 ngs back when gently pressed. Cool cake in pan on wire rack 10 minutes. Invert
cake onto wire rack, remove waxed paper, and cool cake completely. 
 6. Prepare Cream-Cheese Filling: In large bowl, with electric mixer at medium
speed, beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar 2 minutes. In small bowl, beat
cream until soft peaks form; fold whipped cream into cream-cheese mixture just
until blended. (
 Do not over-mix.)   7. To assemble torte, using the bottom of a 9 by 5-inch loaf
pan as a pattern, cut chocolate cake into three 9 by 5-inch rectangles; use
leftover cake trimmings for snacking. Line the inside of the loaf pan with
plastic wrap, allowing
   2 inches to extend over the sides so assembled torte can be easily removed from
 8. Place one cake rectangle in bottom of pan; brush generously with some Coffee
Syrup. Spread half of cheese filling on top of cake in pan. Place another cake
rectangle atop filling; brush with Coffee Syrup and top with cherry filling.
Place remaining ca
 ke atop cherry filling; brush with remaining Coffee Syrup and top with remaining
cheese filling, spreading smoothly as this will be top of torte. Cover torte with
overhanging plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. Prepare
Chocolate M
 eringue Twigs. 
 9. To serve, remove torte from pan by pulling up plastic wrap on all sides. Place
torte on serving plate and gently pull plastic wrap to remove from underneath.
Gently press flat sides of chocolate twigs upright onto sides of torte to cover
completely. I
 f desired, tie ribbon around sides of torte, ending in a bow in the center of one
long side. Top torte with fresh cherries, if desired, and serve. Or refrigerate
up to 2 hours before serving. (Twigs will eventually soften with refrigeration.) 
 Chocolate Meringue Twigs: Heat oven to 275'F. Line 2 large baking sheets with
parchment paper (if not available, use aluminum foil and grease lightly). Place
1/2 C sugar and 2 large egg whites in medium-size bowl. Set the bowl in a larger
bowl of very ho
 t, not boiling, water. With portable electric mixer at high speed, beat mixture
until thick and nearly double in volume. Remove bowl from hot water and continue
beating egg whites until very stiff peaks form-about 4 minutes. Sift 2 T
unsweetened cocoa po
 wder over meringue and fold in until blended. Transfer chocolate meringue to
pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch round tip. Making narrow rows, pipe 3 to 4-inch
long “twigs” of meringue onto baking sheets. Bake meringue twigs 1 1/2 hours or
until dry and f
 irm. Cool twigs completely on baking sheets on wire racks. Meanwhile, melt 1 1/2
oz bittersweet chocolate in microwave or in bowl set over simmering water. Dip
fork in melted chocolate and quickly move it back and forth across tw!
 igs, creating thin chocolate stripes. Refrigerate twigs just until chocolate
stripes harden-about 5 minutes. Gently remove twigs from parchment and store in
airtight container, unrefrigerated, until ready to use. 
 Note: Dried cherries are available by mail from American Spoon Foods, 1668
Clarion Ave., P.O. Box 566, Petosky, Mich. 49770-0566; (800) 222-5886. 
 Country Living/December/92 Scanned & fixed by Di Pahl & <gg> 
                    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -