The doctorate is not from the doctor. Korean style carrot, unknown in Korea. Chicken smoking without nicotine. This glorious series of Soviet inventions continues the Prague cake, which also has nothing to do with the Czech Republic.
How did Soviet sweets inspire Viennese cakes and Czechoslovak colleagues? Together with the host of the Food for History (TVC) program Daria Gerasimova, I recall the legendary Prague cake:
This story began on the corner of Arbat in the early 1960s. A car with a delegation of Czechoslovak chefs climbed into the Prague restaurant – experts arrived to share their experience. Confectionery shop master Vladimir Guralnik met the guests. Inspired by communication with colleagues, he soon composed the Prague cake recipe.
Vladimir Guralnik was a true artist from the art of confectionery – he tirelessly improved the classics and tried new flavors. The creative approach ideally suited the era when the craftsman was working.
Pavel Syutkin, culinary historian:
– In the 1960s, one after another national restaurants were opened in Moscow: a restaurant in the Hotel Ukraine, Vilnius, etc. Everyone brought their kitchens to Moscow and tried to diversify our menu. The mutual influence of national cuisines has led to a sharp increase in the qualifications of specialists, to the creation of new flavors and simply to the development of cooking.
They say pastry chef Vladimir Guralnik was inspired by the Viennese Sacher cake recipe, which his Czechoslovak colleagues shared with him. But to the pride of the Soviet people, Prague cake has become much more complex in both preparation and taste. “Sacher” are glazed chocolate cakes, and “Prague” has a complex cream with yolks, condensed milk and jam sandwich. Guralnik called his work in honor of the restaurant where the recipe was born – “Prague”.
If you come to the capital of the Czech Republic, go to a pastry shop and order a piece of Prague cake, then it is very likely that the waiter shrugs. Surprisingly, the popularity of the cake did not go beyond the USSR. Therefore, despite its name, the cake remains more Russian, or rather Soviet.
After the invention, “Prague” was prepared for some time only in the restaurant’s confectionery shop. When it became clear that buyers liked cakes a lot and that the capacity of the workshop was not enough to meet the demands, the recipe was transferred to mass production. And, I must say, even then all those who wanted products did not get it.
Prague cake recipe: chocolate cakes smeared with chocolate cream and apricot jam, the cake is kept in the cold for 8-10 hours, then glazed with fudge.
To cook “Prague” with the same taste, sweets do not advise to deviate from the canonical recipes – the proportions are verified and any change can lead to an unpredictable result. However, experimenters are still on the alert and are looking for, for example, ways to make an equally delicious but less caloric cake. There is a possibility where sugar is replaced with a sweetener, and instead of condensed milk and butter, ricotta and sour cream are added to the cream.
But no matter what they say about calories, the classic Prague cake is very tasty. Moreover, it has become one of the symbols of the Soviet art of confectionery and has perpetuated the name of the famous restaurant with a history of a century and a half, which, unfortunately, has not functioned for a long time. Such is the story.