Delicious chocolate sponge cake with chocolate whipped cream filling and chocolate ganache with a scandalous history
Rigo Jancsi is the Hungarian chocolate pastry which was on my do list for long time. Finally I made this delicious treat for this month Baking Partner’s challenge. Usually I make the recipes based on the ingredients, or importance. Never tried recipes based on the story behind it. Yes this Rigo Jansci is result of scandalous love story between a famous Hungarian Gypsy violinist who seduced and married Clara Ward, Princess de Caraman-Chimay, the only daughter of American millionaire E. B. Ward and the wife of Belgian Prince de Caraman-Chimay.
Not all the famous love stories ever end in happily ever after. Just like Romeo Juliet, Heer Ranjha, Sohni Mahiwal. Here is the story of this cake Rigo jancsi/Gypsy John cake. Clara Ward, born in 1873, was the youngest child of Eber Brock Ward, multi-millionaire captain of pretty much every pre-automotive industry in Detroit and the Midwest, and an actual captain, too. He died when Clara was two years old, leaving her all of his lumber fortune. (He also left behind lot of fortune for her, steel, railroad, silver and salt mine, shipping, real estate etc..)
When she reached 17 years old, Clara married the Belgian Prince de Caraman-Chimay and became one of Detroit’s elite contingents of gilded age celebrity princesses. It was the ultimate status move for wealthy industrialists: marry your pretty young daughter off to a minor European monarch, who has only name but in reality broke and needed cash for repairing his old chateau (Castle).
Clara was not found of her life in those large mansion may be she couldn’t adjust the life to his terms. Clara and the Prince left for Paris in 1894 when they got tired of dealing with the scandalous royal gossip. In between Clara become mother two kids. Clara and Prince were a frequent visitor of cafes where Clara met a Hungarian violinist named Rigó Jancsi(1896) and, to the creating confusion among the general public and the panting joy of tabloid reporters, fell in love and ran away with him.
To celebrate their love Rigo Jancsi asked the chef to create a cake in his name. The Prince de Caraman-Chimay sought a divorce. Meanwhile, gossip taunts followed Clara and Rigo all over Europe. After few years Rigo was not faithful to Clara and continuing with his affairs and cheating Clara. Clara in the end need to performed at cabarets and salons an art she called poses plastique (wearing something see through and standing still, in a pose, for a long time) for survival. She went on to marry a Spanish waiter she met on a train but her true love – and her last husband- was an Italian station master of a railroad. Clara died at the young age of 43 in Padua, Italy.
When I read about the story I know that I need to try this cake. At first tried recipe from a Hungarian site, but it turned out as a bad sponge cake. Then I tried recipe from Joe-pasty. However his recipe is for a big cake. I know if I made that nobody will try it. So I tried only ⅓ of the recipe. Also adjusted the chocolate mousse filling with gelatin as stabilized whipped cream tend to stay long than the non ones. Since I am the only one going to finish, if you can finish it sooner then, you can skip the stabilized whipped cream part.
I tell you this cake is also like their love story long process, took almost a day. First make chocolate sponge cake, then chocolate whipped cream mousse as filling, then again top with sponge cake and finally top with chocolate ganache. This cake is served as small 2 inch pieces. So there is enough for to a family of four to enjoy. Give it try if you are enthusiast like me. Chocolate over chocolate over chocolate will be delicious and dangerous isn’t it? Here is the recipe of Rigó Jancsi~ a traditional Hungarian and Viennese Celebration Cake
For cake first mix in cocoa powder and melt butter and chocolate
Add sugar in egg yolks and beat well then incorporated melted chocolate
Beat egg white and later incorporate it into egg-yolk chocolate mixture
Make cake batter and bake at 350F
Cake glazed with chocolate
Prepare the stabilized chocolate mousse
Assembly of the cake
Finally top with rest of cake with glazed side towards top, then refrigerate until it set and cut and serve.
For the sponge cake:
- 2 ½ tablespoon 24g all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoons 6g cocoa powder
- 5 tablespoon 71g butter
- 2 ounces 57g semisweet chocolate, chopped fine
- 3 eggs room temperature and separated
- 3 tablespoon 45g sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
For the chocolate glaze:
- 3 ounces 84g bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 tablespoon 26g butter
- 1 tablespoon 27g light corn syrup
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the filling:
- ¾ tablespoons 5g cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoon powdered sugar
- 3 ounces semisweet chocolate chopped fine
- ¾ cup heavy cream + 1 tablespoon
- ¼ teaspoon rum extract otherwise use ¾ tablespoon rum
- ¾ teaspoon gelatin
- 1 tablespoon cold water
- 1 tablespoon boiling water
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the assembly:
- Apricot glaze
- 1 tablespoon apricot jam
- ¼ cup water
- Preheat your oven to 350. Line a 8 inch square pan with parchment paper and brush it with melted butter.
- For the cake. Whisk together the cocoa powder and flour.
- Add the chocolate pieces and butter in a bowl and stir to melt, apply ten-second bursts of heat as necessary. When the mixture is smooth, set it aside to cool.
- In a mixer fitted with a whip, beat the egg yolks on high until pale and thick, about five minutes, then with the machine running add half the sugar in a stream.
- Transfer the yolk mixture to a medium bowl and fold in chocolate mixture.
- Set the bowl aside while you prepare the whites.
- Rinse and dry the mixer bowl and whip. Put the whites in the bowl and whip to soft peaks, add the salt, then add the remaining sugar in a stream.
- Continue to whip to the stiff peak stage, the foam should be very glossy. Stir ⅓ of the whites into the yolk mixture to lighten the batter, then fold in the rest in two additions. Lastly, fold in the flour and cocoa.
- Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and level it with an icing spatula. Bake for 12-15 minutes
- Remove the cake from the oven and loosen the edges with a knife.
- Lay a second sheet of parchment and a wire rack over the layer, then invert the pan( I forgot to line the parchment paper in wire rack) . Remove the pan and — carefully — the top sheet of parchment. Cover the cake with a clean kitchen towel and another wire rack and invert the cake again. Remove the parchment from the top and allow the cake to cool.
- When the cake is cool, cut the sheet in half. Prepare the glaze by combining all the ingredients save for the vanilla in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat the bowl for 20 seconds on full power, then apply as many ten-second bursts as needed to melt the chocolate completely, stirring in between to allow the residual heat to do most of the work. Stir in the vanilla and pour the glaze over the cake, spreading it promptly with an icing spatula
- Allow the glaze to set, about 45 minutes to an hour. divide into two equal half,
- cut one half into 2 ½ inch 6 pieces. .Set the pieces aside or store in the refrigerator.
- For the filling, melt the chocolate pieces with 1 tablespoon heavy cream in the microwave, using a 20-second burst, then as many ten-second bursts as needed until it’s completely smooth. Cool it until it’s just barely warm to the touch.
- Mix in coca powder and sugar in a bowl
- If using gelatin, Add ¾ teaspoon gelatin in 1 tablespoon cold water and set aside for 5 minutes
- Then when you are ready to mix in with cream, add 1 tablespoon of boiling water.
- Add this liquid gelatin to heavy cream along with rum extract, vanilla and whip very well.
- Stir together the cocoa and powdered sugar.
- Whip the cream mixture to just shy of soft peaks. Then, with the machine on, whip in the cocoa and sugar
- Then add melted chocolate and mix well.
- Set the second cake layer on sheet of parchment paper and trim up the sides. Brush apricot glaze over it
- then apply the filling, being careful to apply it evenly.
- Square up the corners. Gently lay the glazed top pieces on the top, then refrigerate the entire cake for at least an hour.
- When ready to serve, cut the cake into pieces using a sharp knife heated under hot top water.
- * if you don't want to store the cake for long time, skip the Stabilized whipped cream frosting with gelatin
- Don't want to use rum skipp that part also
- If you can find corn syrup, try with semi-sweet chocolate instead of bitter chocolate.
This is Swathi ( Dr. Ambujom Saraswathy Ph.D) from Zesty South Indian Kitchen who loves to explore cuisines from all over the world. Whenever possible I try to to give an Indian touch to several of the world cuisine, and has weakness for freshly baked bread. All the recipes you see here are created by me and approved after taste-test by my family.