Chocolate Cake Vs. Sachertorte

In 2008 I visited the Sacher hotel in Vienna, and tried a piece of their famous cake.  With a cup of coffee, a slice cost me 10 Euro, about $NZ25 at the time.   I took a great photo of Eric the Chicken sitting beside the cake and for some inexplicable reason that photo and a few dozen others I took the same afternoon were lost.   The sad story is recounted here.

This chocolate cake is better than Sachertorte, in my opinion.

Chocolate Cake



  • 2 cups flour
  • 10 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup strong coffee, cooled.


  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 250g dark chocolate



  1. Preheat oven to 180° C
  2. Grease a 20-25cm cake tin
  3.  Put the dry ingredients into the bowl of a mixer and mix well
  4. Make a well in the middle and pour in the beaten eggs, sour cream, coffee/milk and oil
  5. Beat well. The batter should be just pourable.
  6. Pour into the cake tin and bake for about 30 minutes until a skewer comes out moist with crumbs but no liquid batter
  7. Do not overcook.
  8. Allow to cool for 15 minutes or so in the cake tin before removing to a wire rack to cool well before icing.


  1. In a double boiler (or a small saucepan inside a larger one filled with simmering water), melt the chocolate.
  2. Stir in the cream until well mixed and pourable
  3. Pour over the cake and smooth off with a knife
  4. Chill in the refrigerator to set

Serve with whipped cream and a cup of good coffee.
It should be noted that I use Australian size measuring utensils.  The cup is 250ml. Take it from there. The Internet will help.

Afterthought:  Apricot Jam!  A layer under the chocolate icing, or perhaps between two layers of cake.




The original Sachertorte recipe is still kept secret, but the following recipe* is said to be as close as anything anyone else has been able to make.  Try making both and see which you prefer.

For the Sachertorte

  • 150 g  butter
  • 150 g  sugar
  • 150 g  bittersweet chocolate, melted in a double-boiler
  • 8 eggs, separated
  • 120 g flour
  • Extra butter
  • Dry bread crumbs
  • Apricot preserves

For the glaze

  • 150 g bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 200 g sugar, divided
  • 125ml (½ cup) water


  1. Beat the butter together with half of the sugar and the melted chocolate, adding the egg yolks one at a time, until thick and foamy.
  2. Sift the flour over the mixture.
  3. Beat together the egg whites and remaining sugar until stiff and mound on top of the flour.
  4. Fold everything together carefully.
  5. Pour the mixture into a springform pan that has been buttered and coated with bread crumbs and bake at 180°C (350°F) for about an hour.
  6. To cool the cake, turn it upside down onto a wire rack.
  7. After about 2 hours, remove it from the pan (you may want to cut the top side to make it level) and place it on a platter with the smooth torte base on top.
  8. Spread with a very thin layer of apricot preserves and glaze with a chocolate icing.

Chocolate glaze:

  1. Melt the chocolate in bain-marie or double boiler and stir in the oil.
  2. Bring the sugar and water to a boil.
  3. A spoonful at a time, stir the cooled sugar solution into the melted chocolate until you have a smooth mixture.

The Viennese serve Sachertorte with whipped cream and a cup of coffee.

*The source of this recipe is here.  


About Uisce úr

Though I am old with wandering Through hollow lands and hilly lands, I will find out where she has gone, And kiss her lips and take her hands; And walk among long dappled grass, And pluck till time and times are done, The silver apples of the moon, The golden apples of the sun.
This entry was posted in cakes and confectionery, chocolate, Con-fusion cooking, Dessert, Party Food and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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