Esterházy Torte: a dessert for the prince of gourmets

Torte Esterházy is one of the most prestigious desserts in Hungarian cuisine, on par with torte Dobos and torte Sacher. It is one of the famous pastries that have their origins in the days of the Habsburg monarchy and which still constitute a substantial part of the pastries offered by Hungarian confectioners today. Its original creator is unknown, but its name certainly comes from Prince Pál Antal Esterházy de Galántha, for whom, according to legend, the dessert was first prepared in the 19th century. The prince had a great reputation for his gastronomic taste, even Esterházy rostélyos, for example, was named after him.

Translation of Tamás Vaski

According to the most widespread assumption, Franz Sacher, creator of the famous pie of Sacher, would have also prepared this dessert, since it was used at the time at the court of the prince. No one knows the original recipe, but during its journey of conquest, multiple variations have diversified from the dessert. There is even a debate over the appropriate number of layers the cake should have. Its almond and cream properties, as well as its trademark decorative top, are everlasting. Some variations are gorgeous, and in this article we’ll share a simplified version of the Esterházy Pie that’s easier to make at home.

Esterházy pie


For the cake layers:

  • 8 eggs
  • 16 dkg of sugar
  • 20 dkg of flour
  • 5 dkg of ground almonds

For the cream:

  • 8 dl milk
  • 5 tablespoons of sugar
  • 10 dkg of ground almonds
  • 0.5 dl rum
  • 2 dl whipped cream

For the icing:

  • 25 dkg of powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of water
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder

For the dough, whip the 8 eggs with the 16 dkg of sugar until fluffy, then add the egg yolk and whisk for another minute. Mix 20 dkg of flour and 5 dkg of ground almonds together, then gently incorporate them into the beaten eggs. From this mixture, bake 4 pieces of equally thin cake layers at 180 degrees Celsius, baking for about 15 minutes.

For the cream, cook the pudding powder in the sweetened milk, and once it has cooled, add the almond powder, rum and whipped whipped cream. The finished cream filling can be evenly distributed between the layers of cake.

Prepare the icing by mixing the water, lemon juice and powdered sugar. Remove a teaspoon of frosting, sprinkle with cocoa powder and place it in a pastry bag. Cover the dough with white icing, then draw lines on it with the cocoa powder icing from the pastry bag. Using a utility knife, pull these lines in a perpendicular direction. This movement will give the cake its top marble-like layer.

Related article

Almás Béles – Hungary’s answer to apple pie – with recipe!

Almás Béles - Hungary's answer to apple pie - with recipe!

In Hungary, the most popular homemade recipe for the pie is almás béles (apple filling), which is perhaps a more dough-oriented version than the typical apple pie.

Photos and featured photo by Péter Csákvári / Hungary Today

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