My take on the famous Kyiv Torte – aka, the Hazelnut Meringue Cake. This stunning Ukrainian cake recipe is made with simple sponge cake soaked with hazelnut liqueur, chocolate ganache filling, caramel frosting and crunchy hazelnut meringue! All those incredible layers, textures and flavors come together to create an unforgettable cake! This meringue cake is the ultimate hazelnut treat!
Check out my new cookbook, Beyond Borscht, for a more classic take on this delicious cake!
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Watch my video recipe for step-by-step instructions to make the perfect ‘Hazelnut Meringue Cake’! Want to receive new recipe notifications? Subscribe to my YouTube channel and turn on notifications!
History of the Kiev Torte
The original, Ukrainian cake ‘Kyiv Torte’ is traditionally made with one tall meringue layer, thin layers of sponge cake on the top and bottom, all covered with a buttercream frosting. It was first created in 1956 and sold in bakery shops across the USSR. It’s still very popular today and available even in the US in Eastern European grocery stores. My recipe is slightly different, incorporating more layers but the flavor is still the same!
How It’s Made
The main star in this meringue cake recipe is the hazelnut meringue! It’s slightly different in texture than the meringue that we are used to in the US. This Eastern European version is baked at a low oven temperature for many hours, until it’s crispy inside and out. When it’s ready, it will sound hollow when tapped on the top. When making the meringue, make sure to wash the mixing bowl very well with degreasing dish soap and white table vinegar, otherwise the egg whites will not mix properly and fall flat. The vinegar will get rid of any stuck on grease.
Frosting & Garnish
Besides the delicate hazelnut meringue layers, this hazelnut meringue cake is made with simple sponge cake, caramel frosting and chocolate ganache filling. I have separate video recipes for each step of this cake, with in-depth instructions. Check out those videos here:
- I absolutely love my ‘Salted Caramel Frosting’ for this recipe and so many others!
- I used my ‘Chocolate Ganache Filling’ for this cake on the inside and as a garnish.
- And my super easy and simply ‘Sponge Cake Recipe’ is perfect for this cake.
I garnished the top of my hazelnut cake with dollops of salted caramel frosting and also piped some of the chocolate ganache.
- And, you can never go wrong with the ‘Classic Napoleon Torte’ – delicate layers filled with custard cream!
- Chocolate Spartak Cake – 8 layers of chocolate cake with whipped cream frosting!
- Korolebsky Torte – alternating layers of chocolate and poppy seed with caramel frosting!
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Need some supplies to make this recipe? You can get them here (Amazon affiliate links):
This classic Ateco turntable is a must for cake decorating!
I love these aluminum cake pans for baking all my cake layers.
If you don’t want to use hazelnut liqueur, try adding a bit of hazelnut extract for more flavor.