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Rigó Jancsi

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Rigó Jancsi is a traditional Austro-Hungarian cube shaped chocolate sponge cake and chocolate cream pastry.

The cake has two layers of chocolate-sponge cake. These chocolate sponge cake layers are made with beaten egg whites, melted chocolate, butter, sugar and flour. Sugar creamed egg yolks are beaten into the mixture. Between the two chocolate sponge cake layers there is a thick layer of very rich chocolate and cream filling, and a very thin apricot jam layer. The filling may include a touch of dark rum and/or vanilla. The cake is covered with a dark chocolate fondant glaze.

The Rigó Jancsi cake originated and gained popularity in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, and is named after Rigó Jancsi (1858–1927), a famous Hungarian gypsy (Romani people) violinist. Jancsi is famed for his seduction and marriage to Clara Ward, Princess de Caraman-Chimay, the only daughter of American millionaire E. B. Ward, and wife to the Belgian Prince de Caraman-Chimays. Clara and Jancsi met in 1896, while Rigo Jancsi played violin at a Paris restaurant, where Clara dined out with her husband, Prince Joseph. Between 1896 and 1898, newspapers wrote extensively about the marriage of the primás (first violinist) Jancsi Rigó to the Belgian countess. The cake is a celebration cake wearing Rigó Jancsi's name and in honor of the romantic love story.

In "Flavors of Hungary", a cookbook written by Charlotte Slovak Biro, this cake is called "Gypsy John."

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