A Black Forest Cake usually consists of several soaked sponge cake layers that are sandwiched between whipped cream and cherries, then decorated with additional whipped cream and chocolate shavings. This version happens to be alcohol-free and tastes moist and delicious!
TO MAKE CHOCOLATE CAKE: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease (using non-stick cooking spray) two round 9" cake pans and lightly flour; set aside.
Whisk the dry ingredients, except for the baking soda in a large bowl.
Dissolve the baking soda in 1 tbsp of vinegar. Then add all the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk until combined.
Evenly spread the cake batter into the cake pans and bake for 20-25 minutes or until done.
Cool cake in pans for about 20 min then invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely before frosting and soaking.
TO MAKE SYRUP: Drain 1 (24 oz) jar of dark Morello cherries, reserving the liquid for syrup.
Pour the syrup into a small saucepan and add 1 cup of sugar (you should have about 1 1/2 cups of liquid). Heat over medium heat until sugar completely dissolves and liquid slightly thickens. Cool completely before using for cake layers.
TO MAKE FROSTING: Beat heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl until soft peaks form; add the cream cheese and Greek yogurt and beat until combined. Then add the cool whip and mix thoroughly, until thick and creamy.
TO ASSEMBLE THE CAKE: Slice each cake layer evenly in half, cutting crosswise.
Place bottom of the inverted cake layer (the very top upside down) onto the bottom of a cake plate. Drizzle about 2-3 tbsp of syrup onto the cut cake layer working with one piece at a time. (Soak layers one at the time as layering since to prevent and tears.)
Spread about 1/2 cup of frosting over the top of the cake layer then evenly spread 3-4 tbsp of drained cherries over the frosting. Repeat ending with a cake layer and soak.
To frost cake and garnish: Frost top and sides evenly with the remaining frosting. Then sprinkle sides with chocolate shavings. I placed about five large shavings over the top center of the cake as well.
Pipe out 1 cup of cool whip, (thawed and whipped) onto the top border of the cake making swirls going clock-wise. Then place fresh cherries over the top of each curl. Refrigerate overnight for all the flavors to meld together.