A good Dobos Torte question came in via email a few minutes ago from reader Nora, asking why I can’t just skip all the repetitive baking and simply slice two normal cake layers horizontally into, say, three pieces each. This of course is how a great many multi-layer cakes are made.
The answer is simply because it wouldn’t taste the same. American-stlye cake layers are leavened with baking powder, for one (you need that to achieve the height). Dobos layers, by comparison, are leavened with egg foam.
But more than that, slicing up two American-style cake layers would yield a cake with a much lower crust-to-crumb ratio. You mean cake layers have crusts? Of course they do — soft, golden, sweet and delicious things they are too, full of deep caramel flavor. When you’re dealing with two-inch thick cake layers you don’t notice the flavor as much. However when you start stacking very thin, individually baked layers six, eight, ten layers high, you realize how much flavor they bring to the party.