Sacher-Torte by Hotel Sacher Wien
KK in the Kitchen
If you’ve already picked the apples, carved the pumpkins, and made that pecan pie, how about a new spin on a festive recipe from across the pond? Swap out the cider for a sweeter treat with an Austrian flair—Hotel Sacher Wien’s recipe for Sacher-Torte is just perfect for anyone in need of a Europe fix right about now this year. (And honestly, who isn’t?)
Plus, unlike the banana bread craze of Fall 2020, you don’t need to be Martha Stewart to recreate this Viennese chocolate concoction. In fact, this famous recipe was devised on the spot! Sacher-Torte originated in 1832 when Prince Metternich of Austria requested dessert, but his chef had fallen ill. 16-year-old trainee, Franz Sacher, stepped up to the plate (pun intended!) and whipped up a simple-yet-delicious chocolate creation known as Sacher-Torte. Franz’s recipe remains an Austrian legend to this very day.
– 130 g Dark couverture chocolate (min. 55% cocoa content)
– 1 Vanilla Pod
– 150 g Softened butter
– 100g Icing sugar
– 6 Eggs
– 100 g Castor sugar
– 140 g Plain wheat flour
– 200 g Apricot jam
– 200 g Castor sugar
– 150 g Dark couverture chocolate (min. 55% cocoa content)
– Unsweetened whipped cream to garnish
Preheat oven to 170°C. Line the base of a springform with baking paper, grease the sides, and dust with a little flour.
Melt couverture over boiling water. Let cool slightly.
Slit vanilla pod lengthwise and scrape out seeds. Using a hand mixer with whisks, beat the softened butter with the icing sugar and vanilla seeds until bubbles appear.
Separate the eggs. Whisk the egg yolks into the butter mixture one by one. Now gradually add melted couverture chocolate. Beat the egg whites with the castor sugar until stiff, then place on top of the butter and chocolate mixture. Sift the flour over the mixture, then fold in the flour and beaten egg whites.
Transfer the mixture to the springform, smooth the top, and bake in the oven (middle rack) for 10–15 minutes, leaving the oven door a finger’s width ajar. Then close the oven and bake for approximately 50 minutes. (The cake is done when it yields slightly to the touch.)
Remove the cake from the oven and loosen the sides of the springform. Carefully tip the cake onto a cake rack lined with baking paper and let cool for approximately 20 minutes. Then pull off the baking paper, turn the cake over, and leave on rack to cool completely.
Cut the cake in half horizontally. Warm the jam and stir until smooth. Brush the top of both cake halves with the jam and place one on top of the other. Brush the sides with the jam as well.
To make the glaze, put the castor sugar into a saucepan with 125 ml water and boil over high heat for approximately 5 minutes. Take the sugar syrup off the stove and leave to cool a little. Coarsely chop the couverture, gradually adding it to the syrup, and stir until it forms a thick liquid (see tip below).
Let a little of the glaze run over a wooden cooking spoon. It should now be covered by a layer of glaze approximately 4 mm thick. If the glaze is too thick, add a few drops of sugar syrup to dilute it (to do so, loosen any remaining sugar in the saucepan with a little hot water). Make sure the glaze does not get too hot, or it will be dull when cooked and not glossy.
Pour all the lukewarm glaze liquid at once over the top of the cake and quickly spread using a palette knife. Leave the glaze to set for a few hours. Serve garnished with whipped cream.