🇭🇺 Hungary: Zserbó

Gerbeaud cake is probably the best-known Hungarian dessert. This dessert was invented by a Swiss born confectioner (Emil Gerbeaud) who lived and worked in Hungary.

“I am sure if you hear the name of Hungarian Gerbeaud, you associate it with the Café Gerbeaud in the heart of Budapest. But to me, the word “Gerbeaud” means this wonderful and delicious homemade layered cake with walnut and apricot jam filling, covered with chocolate. Christmas and Easter is just unimaginable without this excellent cake.”

-Szabolcs Takács, Ambassador of Hungary
For the full experience, play this traditional tune while prepping the recipe!

🇭🇺 Hungary: Zserbó—Hungarian Gerbeaud Cake

Servings 45 slices
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes



  • 7 ½ cups flour
  • 2 cups butter
  • 1 ¼ cups powdered sugar
  • 2 ½ ounces fresh yeast or 3 tablespoons of dry yeast
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Pinch of salt


  • 2 cups ground walnuts
  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar packed
  • Seeds from one vanilla bean
  • Grated peel of 1 lemon
  • 2 cups plus 3 tablespoons apricot jam divided


  • 10 ounces dark chocolate minimum 50% cacao


  • Knead the dough ingredients, divide into three parts, and let rest for 30 minutes.
  • In a separate bowl, mix the dry filling ingredients: ground walnuts, powdered sugar, vanilla bean seeds, and lemon peel.
  • Line a half-sheet baking pan (13×18”) with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the first portion of dough into a rectangle about the size of the pan and 1 millimeter thick. Place the rolled out dough onto the lined baking sheet.
  • Spread half of the apricot jam on top and then spread half of the filling evenly over it.
  • Repeat the previous step with the second portion of dough and place on top of the first dough.
  • Roll out the third portion of dough to the same size and prick it all over with a fork. Place on top of the second dough.
  • Let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes, then bake at 350°F for 40-45 minutes.
  • While it’s still hot, carefully go over it with a rolling pin to make it even. When it has cooled, put another baking sheet on it and flip it over so that it will be even. Allow cake to cool entirely.
  • Melt the chocolate in the double boiler and spread evenly on the cake.


Tip: Make at least 24 hours in advance and cool completely before glazing.

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