My favorite dessert is the luscious Rigó Jancsi. It is Hungarian in origin and I first sampled it on my last trip to Hungary. Sadly, I have not had it in 24 years. Why so long? It would seem that I have yet to sample an authentic Rigó Jancsi outside of Hungary. My brother-in-law tried to make it once for me as a birthday present, but sadly failed in his endeavor. Although the failure was still pleasing on the palate, it just did not come close to replicating the original. I also tried the Rigó Jancsi offered by the Farkas bakery, but even they admit that it is not authentic in duplication. It differs enough that I think they should not even call it Rigó Jancsi and should come up with some other name for their chocolate confection.
Rigó Jancsi is a chocolate lover's dream come true. It is chocolate upon chocolate upon chocolate. The top is a solid layer of chocolate. The cake is light and fluffy. The chocolate mousse cream is like eating a chocolate cloud. Also, consistent with the Hungarian palate, it is not overly sweet. As a result, it is not difficult to eat many in a single sitting. Perhaps some day I will try my hand at trying to re-create this masterpiece. My Hungarian cookbook describes careful folding of the batter to ensure a light and fluffy cake as well as beating the chocolate cream until the peaks are stiff enough to stand on their own. It also states that everything depends on using the very best cocoa.
This dessert has an interesting historical background. It was named after the Hungarian violin primás Rigó Jancsi. It turns out that the Belgian Duke was having dinner with his wife at a venue where Rigó Jancsi was playing. The Duke's wife, the Princess Chimay fell in love with Rigó Jancsi's passionate dark eyes and soulful violin playing. She left her husband for this gypsy violinist. It created quite the scandal in that day. The scandal caught the imagination of a pastry chef and hence created this dessert to honor the love affair.
Rigó Jancsi may have stolen the love of the fair Princess Chimay, but the dessert has captured my unrelenting longing for it.