Vegetable oil, for greasing
3 large eggs
100g caster sugar
80g plain flour
20g cocoa powder
300ml double cream
2 x 410g cans Princes black cherry fruit filling
Grated chocolate (milk or plain), to decorate
1. Pre-heat the oven to Gas Mark 7/220°C/200°C Fan. Grease two 18cm sandwich tins with a little vegetable oil and line the bases with circles of baking paper.
2. Using a hand-held electric mixer, whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large bowl until very pale and light in texture — this will take about 5 minutes on full power. To check that the mixture is thick enough, lift up the beaters (switched off) — they should leave a trail for a few seconds.
3. Sift the flour and cocoa powder together, then add to the mixture and fold it in gently but thoroughly, using a large metal spoon (do not use the electric whisk). Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and level the tops.
4. Bake the cakes for 8-9 minutes until firm and springy to the touch. Remove from the oven and turn them out onto a cooling rack. Cover with a clean damp tea towel and leave until completely cold. Remove the lining paper. Using a bread knife, slice through the cakes horizontally. (You will just be using three of the layers).
5. Whip the cream in a chilled bowl until it holds its shape. Reserve about one third for decoration. Share the remaining cream between two of the cakes, spreading it out evenly over the surface. Reserve 8 cherries from the Princes black cherry fruit filling for decoration. Put the rest of the fruit filling into a large sieve to remove some of the sauce, then spoon the cherries onto the cream-topped cakes. Layer the cakes on top of each other, then place the third cake on top.
6. Spread a very thin layer of cream over the top cake, then sprinkle grated chocolate evenly over it. Pipe 8 swirls of cream onto the cake (or just use heaped teaspoons, if preferred), then put a cherry on top of each swirl. Keep chilled, though take the cake out of the fridge half an hour before serving.
Recipe courtesy of www.princes.co.uk