Known as kalter hund (literally, "cold dog") in Germany, this icebox-style cake is a classic Black Forest dessert that can be found in many a grandmother's refrigerator. It's made with alternating layers of silky, super-chocolaty ganache and crisp, crunchy Leibniz butter cookies, which are available at most supermarkets.
Slideshow: Chocolate Cake Recipes
Line a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with foil, allowing 2 inches of overhang on all sides. In a stainless steel bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate in the coconut oil, stirring, 7 minutes. Whisk in the cocoa powder, vanilla and salt until incorporated, then whisk in the cream until smooth. Let cool slightly.
Pour a 1/4-inch-thick, even layer of the ganache into the prepared pan. Arrange a layer of biscuits on the ganache, breaking them to fit and leaving a 1/4-inch border of ganache around the edge. Repeat the layering with the remaining ganache and biscuits, ending with a layer of ganache.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, 3 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Using the foil, lift out the cake onto a cutting board. Discard the foil and slice the cake crosswise 3/4 inch thick. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.
The cake can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before slicing.
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