Fallen Chocolate Cake with Espresso Cherry Sauce

Fallen Chocolate Cake with Espresso Cherry Sauce

By: Nadine M.- Mount Healthy, OH - 2014 Recipe Contest Submission

“When this cake comes out of the oven it does fall!!! Don't worry, it's supposed to. This rich, dense cake is full of flavor. The addition of the Espresso Cherry Balsamic Sauce makes it unbelievably delicious. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.”

This is a Door County Coffee Fan recipe. It was not made in the kitchens of the Door County Coffee Café.



Featured ingredient: Elite Espresso


  • 1/2 C.cup hazelnuts
  • 1 1/4 C. sugar, divided
  • 1/4 C. brewed Door County Elite Espresso
  • 4 oz bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 C. dark unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 egg whites

Espresso Cherry Balsamic Sauce:

  • 1 C. sugar
  • 1/4 C. brewed Door County Elite Espresso
  • 1/4 C. water
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar (good quality)
  • 1 lb frozen dark pitted cherries
  • 1/2 C. heavy cream
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Using a 9 inch springform pan, trace a circle from parchment paper. Cut out the circle.
  3. Spray the springform pan with a non stick cooking spray; place the parchment circle on the bottom of the pan, then spray again with the non-stick cooking spray.
  4. Place hazelnuts in a food processor & process until finely ground.
  5. Sprinkle the ground hazelnuts over the parchment.
  6. Using your fingers gently press the hazelnuts onto the bottom of the pan.
  7. In a medium size saucepan, combine 1 cup of sugar and the Elite Espresso; bring to a boil.
  8. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
  9. Remove from heat; stir in bittersweet chocolate and salt; stir until chocolate is completely melted and smooth.
  10. Whisk in cocoa until well blended. Add vanilla.
  11. Add eggs one at a time, whisking between each addition.
  12. In a medium size mixing bowl, place the 4 egg whites. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks have formed.
  13. As the peaks are beginning to form, slowly add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar.
  14. Fold a quarter of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture; repeat until all is incorporated.
  15. Pour into prepared pan and bake approximately 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out ALMOST clean. You will have some residue on the toothpick because of the cake texture.
  16. Remove from oven, cool to room temperature.
  17. Gently run a knife around the outside edge of pan; invert cake onto cooling rack. Remove pan, and parchment paper.
  18. Invert cake onto serving platter.

Make Espresso Cherry Balsamic Sauce while the cake is cooling:

  1. In a medium saucepan, place sugar, Elite Espresso, water and balsamic vinegar; stir until sugar dissolves.
  2. Add the cherries, bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for approximately 12-15 minutes or until cherry mixture is reduced to 2 cups.
  3. In a small narrow bowl, beat cream and sugar until stiff peaks form.

To serve: Slice cake into serving pieces. Place on dessert plates, top with sauce and a dollop of whipped cream. Serves 8 very happy people.