As a delectable highlight of Hungary’s August 20th celebrations, those with a sweet tooth can try the new national cake that’s available from this day on. Starting in 2007, the sweet annual tradition of selecting a new birthday cake for the country has become an integral part of the nation’s annual celebrations to commemorate the foundation of the Magyar state. The winning cake of the 2016 contest is called the “Green Gold of Őrség”, a name referring to pumpkin-seed oil – one of the main ingredients of this dessert that comes from the Őrség region in western Hungary.
This year, a record-number of confectioneries joined the nationwide contest to invent an original cake recipe for a chance to win the esteemed title “The Birthday Cake of Hungary”. This relatively recent tradition is now an integral part of the historic August 20th celebrations, as the Magyars commemorate the first king of Hungary, St. Stephen, and celebrate the foundation of the Hungarian state in a rather sweet way. On this occasion, the National Trade Corporation of Hungarian Confectioners calls for pastry makers from all over the country to invent or reinvent desserts that reflect Hungarian traditions and flavors, which include local foodstuffs and are made without adding any artificial ingredients.
The 2016 winner of the contest is Gellért Szó, pastry chef of the Salgótarján-based Kézműves Confectionery in the northeast part of Hungary, with his creative confection called the “Green Gold of Őrség”. Chef Szó was awarded the prize for the second time in a row after last year’s victory in the same contest, when his Caramel Cake with Pannonhalmi Apricot Pálinka was selected as the 2015 birthday cake of Hungary.
One of the main components of the freshly invented delicacy is clear pumpkin-seed oil, a healthy and traditional culinary treat deriving from Hungary's Őrség region, while the rest of the ingredients of this soft-and-crispy delicacy include almond flour, raspberry jelly, white-chocolate ganache, wafer, and pumpkin-seed praline – and to give it a glossy finish, the cake is topped with pumpkin-seed jelly.
On top of all, every year since 2012, diabetic and health-conscious people can also celebrate Hungary’s national holiday with a slice of the country’s birthday cake, as the One Drop of Attention Foundation (“Egy Csepp Figyelem Alapítvány”) selects Hungary’s sugar-free cake, where white flour, added sugar, artificial additives, and preservatives all must be left out from the list of ingredients. In 2016, the “Blueberry Princess Cake” by the Budapest-based Tortavár Confectionery earned first prize within this category.
After learning about these mouthwatering treats, we are eager to sample these winning confections that are available to the public during the national blast on August 20th at the Street of Hungarian Flavors, a gastronomy haven offering traditional local treats during August 20-21 at the Várkert Bazaar, near the Buda side of the Chain Bridge. For those who don’t have a chance to taste the winning cake during the celebrations, they are available from August 20th at any of these confectioneries:Auguszt Confectionery Address: Budapest 1053, Kossuth Lajos utca 14-16More details Európa Café and Confectionery Address: Budapest 1055, Szent István krt. 7-9 More detailsHorváth Confectionery Address: Budapest 1042, Petőfi Sándor u. 35 More details JégbüféAddress: Budapest 1085, József körút 50; Budapest 1024, Fény utca 15More details Művész Café and Confectionery Address: Budapest 1061, Andrássy út 29 More details
Nándori Confectionery Address: Budapest 1092, Ráday u. 53 More details Szamos Gourmet House
Budapest 1052, Váci u. 1 More detailsTortavár Confectionery (offering “Blueberry Princess Cake”) Address: Budapest 1024, Keleti Károly utca 25 More details