Recipe source: Szamos
This is one of the classic Hungarian cakes that is so popular since the 19th century when the recipe was created. There is no accurate information about its origin, but as we know it was the favourite cake of the noble family called Eszterházy. If I go to a confectionary's and I would like to choose a slice of cake, this would be the 'test' cake that shows if I'm at the right place or not... but now I was brave enough and tried to bake it at home as well. Probably you've already figured out that I'm absolutely satisfied with the result.
The crust doesn't contain any flour, but ground walnut. I really enjoy it when a cake is not dry but a kind of moist on the inside, and with this recipe, the crust and the filling are forming a wonderful texture together. The filling is originally a buttery cream which this recipe used too, but nowadays many confectioners prepare it with a more light creamy filling. The top of the cake is traditionally covered by apricot jam, then a warm fondant layer with the unique Eszterházy pattern which is from melted chocolate, but nowadays it's so popular to replace the fondant with the combination of white and dark chocolate.
But you know, Christmas is here, so this time instead of the traditional outlook, I've turned my lovely Eszterházy cake into a festive dessert. I've prepared some buttercream icing according to the recipe you can find here.
As you probably remember from the Unicorn cake post, I use Wilton piping tips. You can see the number of each tip I've used to decorate my cake below:
The white flowers and pine cones were piped into square-shaped parchment papers, then they went into the fridge to set before I've placed them on the cake. The pine, berries and leaves were piped straight on the cake.
I've used the Wilton Colour Right System to create these Christmassy colours:
- Pine leaves: Olive green 378 from 'Autumn' Palette with increased food colouring quantities
- Pine cones: Brown 7517 from 'Winter' Palette
- Leaves: Olive green 378 from 'Autumn' Palette
- Berries: Red 187 from 'Autumn' Palette + Black gel food colouring
I hope you will try this cake and got some inspiration to start practising more with buttercream piping too.
For me is like therapy... Imagine making something so time-consuming, so intricate, so special that you put all your talent, attention and energy into it for hours or even days. Finally, you can admire the finished project, only to destroy it moments later. That's how the Tibetan monks create and wash away their sand mandalas... and that's how I create these cakes, then eat them all :)