Sachertorte – the best known chocolate cake in the world

Exactly one year ago today, I started writing my blog to digitise my recipes, as I now have such an extensive collection that it makes it impossible for me to take them all with me when I go on holiday.

My firtst ever post on the Blog! And very befittingly another great Austrian classic!

I am deeply touched and very humbled to find that the recipes that I use for my friends and family are very popular worldwide. I thank all of you very much for your motivating words and for your interest. I am always happy to receive messages from all over the world. My language skills are slowly improving thanks to Google Translate without which I would be quite lost.


To celebrate the first birthday of, I would like to share with you today one of the best loved Austrian recipes that has been enjoyed in my family for 4 generations and which is part of my culture and youth. How many times have my sisters and I made this recipe, for birthdays, dinner parties, or other celebrations. It is therefore perfectly fitting for me as half Austrian to celebrate my blog! I will definitely enjoy it with my family 🙂

As everyone probably knows, the Sachertorte is one of the most famous chocolate cakes in the world. It was created in 1832 by the then 16-year-old Franz Sacher for a dinner party at Prince Metternichs, who wanted to introduce his guests to a new delicacy. The cake was made famous by his son Eduard Sacher, who trained in the confectionery Demel in Vienna and in that time perfected the Sachertorte as it is now known. For this reason, it was first served in the Demel confectionery, and later also in the Hotel Sacher, which Eduard Sacher founded. There was a long-standing legal dispute between the confectionery Demel and the Hotel Sacher, which was allaid by the fact that the Hotel Sacher is allowed to call its Sacher cakes ‘Original Sachertorte’, while Demel calls his Sachertorte the ‘Eduard Sacher Torte’. The biggest difference is that the Original Sachertorte contains two layers of apricot jam, while the ‘Eduard Sacher torte’ contains only one apricot jam layer directly under the chocolate glaze.

The Sacher Torte is delicate and mild in taste, not too sweet, not too soft, not too dry, not too sandy and it melts on the tongue. It is excellent because of its durability, as it improves from day to day. After two weeks, it is still as delicate as on the first day.

There are many different recipes of The Sachertorte, as the original recipe is a closely guarded secret at Hotel Sacher. It is almost impossible to imitate the original, you always recognize a copy. All we know is that the balance of ingredients plays a very important role. It is also particularly important that the ingredients are of excellent quality. Very good chocolate, excellent apricot jam etc. By far the best apricot jam is that of my mother who always adds a shot of alcohol and uses the apricots from the beautiful Wachau which have an incomparable taste especially when they are fully mature.

The recipe of the Sachertorte we use in my family is the recipe from the old Sacher cookbook from the 70s. It is not the original recipe that is sold in the hotel, but it is truly excellent. And if you are already trying to imitate a cake, then in this case you should stay as close to the source as possible in my opinion.

Recipe Sachertorte from the old Sacher cookbook

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  • 130 g butter
  • 110 g caster sugar
  • Vanilla
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 130 g chocolate (your choice of brand)
  • 6 egg whites
  • 110 g granulated sugar
  • 130 g flour
  • Ingredients for the jam glaze
  • 200 g apricot jam
  • 2 tbsp Cointreau or rum (optionnel)
  • For the chocolate glaze
  • 150 g chocolate
  • 200 g granulated sugar
  • 125 ml water

Preheat the oven to 170°C, top and bottom heat.

The lightly warmed butter is whisked with the icing sugar and vanilla until frothy, then gradually add the six egg yolks and fold in the melted chocolate.

Beat the 6 egg whites until forming light peaks then add the granulated sugar and continue to whisk until stiff. Add the egg whites gently and slowly into the chocolate mixture in 3 steps.

The flour is then carefully folded into the batter so it is just blended without losing its volume.

Use a cake pan of 22 cm diameter. Use a sheet of parchment paper for the bottom of the pan. Now fill the mass into the cake pan and smooth it until level.

The cake is baked in a preheated oven at about 170 degrees Celsius. For the first 12 to 15 minutes, leave the oven door open (about a finger wide gap) so that the mass can lift and lightly bulge, but no crust is formed yet. Then bake the cake with the oven door closed for another hour. Now drop the cake in the cake pan onto a cooling rack and let it cool for 20 minutes, then put it back right side up and let it cool down completely. Only after the complete cooling is the cake taken out of the pan. To do this, use a thin little knife to cut the cake loose from the edges, removing then the cake bottom and the baked paper.

For the apricot glaze I always warm up the jam, add the alcohol and mix it until it is completely smooth. Now cut the top so the cake is level and turn it over again.

Cut the cake in half and add a layer of apricot jam. Put the two halves back together. Cover the cake with the rest of the apricot jam. For the chocolate glaze, boil the sugar with the water for 5 to 6 minutes, then let the sugar solution cool down a couple of minutes. In the meantime, melt the chocolate then gradually mix with the still warm sugar solution to create a thick, smooth glaze.

If you let the finished glaze run over the back of a wooden cooking spoon, it should remain covered about 4 mm. If the glaze is too warm, it does not get any shine and remains dull after drying, too cold and the glaze dries badly and also runs badly at the edge of the cake. Therefore, be careful, but if the glaze is not perfect, don’t worry, it’s the taste that really matters. As mentioned above, the Sachertorte is extremely durable and improves from day to day. It can be used for at least two weeks.

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