Dobos Torte

Hungarian Seven Layer Birthday Cake Recipe


Hungarian Seven Layer Cake – Dobos Torte

There are hundreds of recipes for Hungarian Dobosh torta out there. But as my son’s birthday was just in three days I was thinking about to make him something special, our traditional and delicous. Hungary is justly renowned for its baked goods, and dobostorta, , is one of its best and arguably the favorite.

Dobosh torta, also known as drum torta or dobos torta, is a Hungarian sponge cake consisting of several – mostly 7 layers filled with rich chocolate buttercream and topped with caramel. This famous cake is named after a nineteenth-century Hungarian Budapest pastry master (some say he was Austrian) pastry chef Jozsef C. Dobos in 1884.

The sides of the cake are usually spread with buttercream and sometimes coated with ground hazelnuts, chestnuts, walnuts or almonds, and made in a round or loaf pan. Since most home ovens heat unevenly, it is advisable not to bake too many layers at the same time.

This is my Slovakian – Hungarian – our interpretation of the cake.

Ingredients for the cake:

14 eggs
300g icing sugar
320g flour

Ingredients for Butter Cream:

360g sugar
400g chocolate
400g butter
6 eggs

Ingredients for the Glaze:

Sugar or
Chocolate ganache

hungarian dobos-torte-decorated-with-edible-icing

To make the butter cream.

Place sugar, chocolate and eggs in a double boiler over medium heat. Whisk furiously until mixture is thick and of a mousse like consistency. Place the softened butter in the bowl of a mixer and whisk until light and fluffy. Add to the cooled mixture a spoonful at a time, whisking between each addition. Scrape down the bowl regularly. Chill until ready to use.

Pre-heat the oven to 350F (180 °C). Mark 10 8in circles on baking parchment and lay on baking trays or grease the bottoms of several 8-inch round cake pans or springform pan and dust with flour, tapping out the excess. Place the sheets on baking trays with the marker tracings underneath (so it doesn’t transfer onto the cake).

To make the sponge layers, break the eggs into a large bowl and add the sugar. Whisk until the mixture is light and foamy and the whisk just leaves a trail when lifted out of the mixture. Lightly fold in the flour, a little at a time. Weigh the batter (remembering to subtract for the weight of the bowl). Divide that number by 10 and that’s how many ounces you will need for each pan in order to create even layers.

Bake for 10 minutes or until edges are very lightly brown. Don’t overbake. Remove from oven, loosen layer and immediately invert onto a cake rack. Continue until all the batter is used. To assemble the cake, place one cake layer (peel the paper away from each layer ) on a platter and cover with a thin layer of buttercream. Sandwich the remaining five circles of 8in sponges together with butter cream. Spread butter cream around the sides and top of the cakes and spoon the remaining buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a medium size star nozzle.

Sprinkle with ground nuts of choice, if desired. Refrigerate.