Death by Chocolate Cherry Cake with Spiked Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate Cherry Cake with Chocolate Rum Ganache | Revamperate Chocolate Cherry Cake with Chocolate Rum Ganache | RevamperateHappy chocolate cake day! It seems fitting for chocolate cake to have it’s own special day, so I’m celebrating it today with an extra chocolatey cake made with cherries and topped with a rum chocolate ganache. This cake is TO DIE FOR and I don’t normally like cherries that much, but let’s be honest, the rum makes it. A little rum takes anything to the next level! 

It uses melted butter and melted chocolate to make it extra rich, so it tastes like a truly chocolate cake. Luckily, the melted butter and buttermilk keep it moist too, so it sort of tastes like an extra rich boxed mix (but SO MUCH BETTER). Then it’s filled with dark pitted cherries and topped with a smooth chocolate ganache spiked with rum. The tastes of the chocolate, cherries and rum go so well together, and the dark cherries really bring out the richness of the cake. 

I baked mini bundt cakes so it would be easy to drizzle the ganache over the top, and one cakelet makes the perfect dessert for two! Valentine’s Day idea, anyone?

Chocolate Cherry Cake with Chocolate Rum Ganache | RevamperateChocolate cake ingredients (makes 10-12 cakelets):

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 3 oz. semi-sweet chocolate 
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour 
  • 1 canned dark pitted cherries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a mini bundt cakelet pan or silicone mold with butter and sprinkle with cocoa powder and set aside. 

In a medium sized bowl, combine the cocoa powder and chopped chocolate. Pour in the hot water and stir with a whisk until smooth. Set aside to cool. 

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl or your stand mixer, mix together the melted butter, buttermilk, vanilla and eggs with a whisk attachment until smooth. Mix in the chocolate mixture. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until smooth. 

Pour a small amount of batter into each cavity and then layer pitted cherries before topping each cavity off with more cake batter until the cakelets are 3/4 full. Bake for 18 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. 

To easily remove them from the pan, I leave mine in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Them remove and replace on a wire rack right-side up. 

Chocolate Cherry Cake with Chocolate Rum Ganache | Revamperate Chocolate Cherry Cake with Chocolate Rum Ganache | RevamperateChocolate rum ganache ingredients: 

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or 8 oz. chopped chocolate)
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp rum

Heat the cream until sizzling. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips until completely melted. Add rum extract and set aside to cool lightly. 

I find it easiest to pour with a measure cup with a spout. Pour the ganache over the cooled cakelets and enjoy! If you desire, sprinkle with cute sprinkles for a little color or decoration. 

Spiked Cherry Truffles

Spiked Cherry Truffles | Revamperate Spiked Cherry Truffles | RevamperateSomehow during Christmastime, I end up adding a splash of alcohol to all my desserts…I don’t know why. It kind of just happens and the result is generally pretty amazing. For those of you who love a little kick to your sweets, today’s will really give you want you want. These spiked cherry truffles, although not exactly truffles, are soaked in vodka to really bring out a sourness in the cherries, and then they’re dipped in chocolate. 

I used dark chocolate for my cherry truffles, but it does keep them fairly bitter. If you want something sweeter, I absolutely recommend using milk chocolate instead. Although I liked the taste of the dark chocolate with a drizzle of white chocolate, I know the combination of sour cherries and bitter chocolate isn’t for everyone, but it totally works! This is a great treat for people who don’t like super sweet desserts, and they’re easy enough to make that you can make a huge batch and divide them into cute little tins to give as gifts. 

Spiked Cherry Truffles | Revamperate Spiked Cherry Truffles | RevamperateIngredients:

  • Maraschino cherries, stems removed
  • Vodka or other choice of alcohol (I used cherry vodka)
  • Dark or milk chocolate 
  • White chocolate

First, remove any stems on your cherries. I purchased cherries with stems already removed.

Fill a bowl with a your choice of alcohol (I used cherry vodka), and add your cherries. They should be fully emerged in the alcohol. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge for several days to allow the alcohol time to soak into the cherries (one week is ideal, but at least 24 hours would be my recommended minimum). That also depends on how strong you want them to be, so if you want a stronger alcohol flavor, leave them to soak as long as possible. 

When you’re ready to make the truffles, remove the cherries from the alcohol and set on a paper towel. Roll them around to dry the outsides – this allows the chocolate to stick better. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.

In one bowl or using the double broiler method, melt the chocolate. I heated mine in the microwave on a defrost setting in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until the chocolate is completely melted. If too thick, add a teaspoon of vegetable oil until the chocolate reaches a dipping consistency. 

Spiked Cherry Truffles | RevamperateDip the cherries in the chocolate, coat them completely and use a fork or dipping tool to pull the cherries out. Let the excess chocolate drip off before placing them on the parchment. Repeat for all cherries and return the baking sheet to the fridge for the chocolate to harden. 

I chose to dip a second time for a harder chocolate shell around the cherries. Remove the cherries from the fridge, repeat dipping in dark chocolate and return to the fridge again. 

At this point, you can add any garnish to the cherries. I chose a sweeter white chocolate to drizzle on top of the heavier dark chocolate. I melted the white chocolate using the same method, added a little vegetable oil to thin it out, and poured the chocolate into a Wilton squeeze bottle. Then just drizzle the chocolate over the hardened dark chocolate truffles, and let them harden completely in the fridge before serving.

I recommend serving them cold, otherwise the chocolate may melt slightly if sitting out for too long. They make a delicious treat on your holiday table, and served alongside a good drink, these are amazing! Enjoy!

Black Forest Cupcakes

Black Forest Cherry Cupcakes | Revamperate Black Forest Cherry Cupcakes | Revamperate
Cherries were never my favorite fruit, but I LOVE me some black forest cupcakes. With a cherry filling and whipped topping, these cupcakes are deliciously decadent. You will think a restaurant served you a cupcake on a silver platter, but no, you can make them at home in as little as an hour. You can easily cut corners by using boxed cake mix, which is what these are made with…I’m a busy person, ok? Plus, I’ve been a bit under the weather this past week so I’m happy to cut a few corners, which is also why I’ll try to keep this post short and sweet. Of course, you can use your favorite chocolate cupcake recipe instead of a box mix.

Black forest cupcakes ingredients (makes 20-24 cupcakes):

  • 1 box of chocolate cake mix (preferably not devils food cake)
  • Eggs (per box instructions)
  • Water (per box instructions)
  • Oil (per box instructions)
  • 1 can cherry pie filling

First, mix the cake. Follow the directions on the box and distribute the batter evenly between lined cupcake cavities. Baking times will vary depending on the cake mix. I used Betty Crocker Triple Chocolate Fudge cake mix, and I think that was a good choice. I would not recommend using a devils food cake mix. Go with something a little more on the decadent or fudgy side to go with the cherry filling and whipped cream.

Black Forest Cherry Cupcakes | Revamperate
Whipped cream frosting ingredients:

  • 1 pint of heavy whipping cream
  • 4 tbs powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Chocolate bar (for shaved topping)

While the cupcakes cool, begin whipping up the frosting. I guess frosting is a bit of a stretch because this is technically whipped cream masquerading as frosting, but it’s still the best. It also keeps these cupcakes from being too overpowering because the topping is light and fluffy to balance out the rich cupcake. With a whisk attachment, whip the cream on high speed for a couple minutes, adding in the vanilla and sugar while it whips. Continue to whip until you see the cream becoming thick. Stop the mixer and pull out the whisk to check if it forms peaks in the whipped cream. That’s how you know it’s done! You want it to be thick so that you can properly pipe the frosting.

Black Forest Cherry Cupcakes | Revamperate Black Forest Cherry Cupcakes | Revamperate
Once the cupcakes have cooled, core them with a corer or just with a knife, which is actually my preferred method. Fill it with cherry pie filling, about enough for 2-4 cherries and some syrup. Move the whipped cream frosting to a piping bag and pipe it onto the cupcakes, starting in the middle and piping out instead of piping it up high. Put a cherry in the middle of the frosting with a little syrup.

For topping, use a small cheese grater to shred the side of a chocolate bar and sprinkle the shavings over the cupcake for good measure to make them extra pretty. Serve and enjoy! Your friends will think you bought these at a high end restaurant (hopefully)!

Shirley Temple Cupcakes

Shirley Temple Cupcakes | Revamperate
Shirley Temple Cupcakes | Revamperate
How cute are these?!

Not to sound too cheesy or anything, but I legitimately had dreams about making these Shirley Temple cupcakes. I loved Shirley Temples when I was a kid. I’d get so excited when my parents would take me to a “fancy” place like Olive Garden and I’d order a Shirley Temple every single time. It was such a treat for me and made me feel extra classy. I was 10 years old, so it was OK.

I was really excited to make these Shirley Temple cupcakes when I thought of the idea, and I found a way to make them extra easy by using boxed cake mix. I substituted soda for water, which significantly improved the cupcake. I’ve never tried baking with soda before, and it made the baked cupcakes extra soft. Like, really soft. Melt in your mouth soft. And the grenadine on the bottom and in the frosting added the perfect Shirley Temple flavor with a maraschino cherry on top for good measure!

Shirley Temple Cupcakes | Revamperate

Shirley Temple cupcake ingredients (about 24 cupcakes):

  • 1 box of white cake mix (I used Duncan Hines)
  • Sprite or 7-Up soda
  • Vegetable oil
  • Egg whites
  • 1-2 tbs grenadine syrup
  • Maraschino cherries (syrup + cherries for topping)

Mix together the box mix, soda, vegetable oil and egg whites according to the box’s instructions, substituting soda for whatever the suggested water measurements are. Separate about two cups of mix into a small bowl, and mix in 2 tablespoons of grenadine syrup.

Line a cupcake pan with liners – I used these cute party cups, which actually did not allow for a lot of mix because of their size, so I had a few muffin-top cupcakes in my first batch. Pour in a small amount of grenadine batter into each cup, filling it no more than 1/4 of the way. Fill the rest with regular batter until each cup is 3/4 full (or less). Play it safe with party cup proportions!

Bake on 350 degrees for 18-22 minutes, depending on what your cake mix box suggests.

Shirley Temple Cupcakes | Revamperate
Cherry grenadine frosting:

  • 1 cup butter, soft
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbs grenadine syrup
  • 1 tbs maraschino cherry syrup

Cream together the butter and powdered sugar until fully mixed to the desired sweetness. Beat in the vanilla, grenadine and cherry syrup (from the jar of cherries). The grenadine will be the biggest flavor source! Mix to taste and move to a piping bag.

Shirley Temple Cupcakes | Revamperate
Pipe the frosting onto cooled cupcakes and top with a shiny maraschino cherry and serve. Cute, right? When you peel off the lining, you have a nice reddish surprise on the bottom of the cupcake from the grenadine!

My coworkers really liked them, but I think they would be so cute for a little girl’s birthday or a baby shower. I’ve gotta admit, they’re super girly, but even the boys liked them. Enjoy!