Waitrose and Partners
White forest gâteau

White forest gâteau

Bang-in-season British cherries are the stars of this twist on a Black Forest gâteau. The yogurt is the secret to a lighter sponge. 

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  • Serves12
  • CourseDessert
  • Prepare45 mins
  • Cook40 mins
  • Total time1 hr 25 mins
  • Pluscooling + chilling

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  • 250g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 200g Greek-style natural yogurt
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ¼ tsp fine salt
  • 2 tbsp milk


  • 600g cherries, pitted and halved
  • ½ lemon, juice
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp kirsch (or apple juice)


  • 200g white chocolate, chopped, plus extra to serve (optional)
  • 250g unsalted butter, softened
  • 250g icing sugar
  • ¼ tsp fine salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4, then grease and base-line 2 x 20cm round cake tins with baking parchment. In a large bowl, use an electric hand mixer to beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Add the eggs, one by one, with a spoonful of the flour, beating well after each addition. Briefly beat in the yogurt and vanilla extract until combined.

  2. Sift over the remaining flour, the bicarbonate of soda and salt, then carefully fold in until smooth. Fold in 2-3 tbsp milk until the batter is of dropping consistency (it should fall off a spoon in 3 seconds). Divide the batter evenly between the prepared tins and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden, springy to the touch and cooked through; a skewer inserted should come out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool fully.

  3. Meanwhile, for the compote, tip the cherries and lemon juice into a large pan and simmer over a medium-high heat for 5 minutes until starting to soften. Add the caster sugar and kirsch, then bubble over a high heat for 12-15 minutes until syrupy and the cherries are soft but hold their shape. Transfer to a heatproof bowl; set aside to cool.

  4. For the buttercream, put the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of gently simmering water (don’t let the water touch the base of the bowl) for 7-10 minutes until melted; after 5 minutes, stir occasionally. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes. In a large bowl, use an electric hand mixer to beat the butter for 3 minutes until light and fluffy. Sift over the icing sugar in 3 batches, beating well after each addition. Briefly beat in the cooled chocolate and salt until combined.

  5. Put one of the cooled sponges on a serving plate or cake stand. Spread over one third of the buttercream and spoon over ½ of the cherries, then drizzle over 1 tsp of the syrupy juices. Place the other sponge on top, then spread ½ of the remaining buttercream over the top and sides in a thin layer (this is known as a crumb coat). Chill the cake for 15 minutes. Repeat with the remaining buttercream, smoothing with a palette knife to coat the cake evenly. Spoon the remaining cherries on top and another 1 tsp of the juices. If liked, use a sharp knife or vegetable peeler to scrape extra white chocolate into shavings and scatter over the top of the cake.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


3,312kJ/ 793kcals



Saturated Fat












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