Making Esterházy Torte

The combination of thin meringue layers and buttercream has been so cherished in Europe for so long that there’s even a special word for it: dacquoise. Which in French means ah, sweet mystery of life at last I found you. Top eleven layers of dacquoise with a smear of apricot glaze, then ice the whole works with chocolate-striped vanilla fondant and you have one of the all-time classics of Viennese pastry: Esterházy torte.


Esterházy Torte Recipe

Tradition holds that Esterházy torte can be no more or less than six layers high. Who knows why, but far be it from me to buck tradition. Some versions of this pastry call for alternating layers of hazelnut and almond meringue. That’s a neat idea, but not necessary. If you feel like making two batches of meringue, go for it! You’ll need:

11 egg whites, room temperature
10.5 ounces granulated sugar
11.5 ounces finely ground peeled hazelnuts or almonds
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 recipe Swiss meringue buttercream
about three ounces apricot glaze
about six ounces poured fondant
about two ounces melted dark chocolate, couverture or ganache
about eight ounces slivered almonds