Without Kevin, there’s no Christmas, just as there’s no Christmas without zserbó. So prepare the classic one, and not a crumb will be left of it!

I fundamentally consider myself a reformist kitchen fairy: I enjoy experimenting, trying alternative solutions, and paying a lot of attention to balanced nutrition. However, there are foods that are good just the way they are, and it would be a sin to change anything about them. Among them, zserbó is one for me. Firstly, because a few indulgences are allowed during Christmas, and secondly, because it’s made based on my mom’s recipe, and biased or not, hers is the best zserbó in the world.

In every aspect, it’s made using the traditional method and ingredients, with layers of crumbly pastry enriched with plenty of walnuts and apricot jam. The top is covered with a cocoa and oil chocolate glaze, not the melted chocolate version. My mom’s zserbó is a four-layered one, and if you aim for a truly impressive pastry, you should definitely make it this way too.

The quantities given in the recipe are sufficient for a larger, 28×40 cm baking tray.

zserbo nicely plated


for 10+ servings


For the dough:

– 500 grams of flour
– a pinch of salt
– 100 grams of sugar
– 25 grams of fresh yeast
– half a deciliter of lukewarm milk
– 250 grams of margarine
– 1 egg
– Flour for rolling out


For the filling:

– 1 large jar of apricot jam (approximately 600 grams)
– 300 grams of ground walnuts
– 200 grams of sugar


For the chocolate glaze:

– 150 grams of powdered sugar
– 2 tablespoons of Dutch cocoa powder (minimum 20% cocoa content)
– 3 tablespoons of hot water
– 2 tablespoons of neutral-flavored oil


Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes
Resting time: 1 hour



1. Crumble the yeast into lukewarm milk with a pinch of sugar and set aside for a few minutes.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Crumble the margarine into the dry ingredients. Add the egg and the yeast mixture that has been activated in milk. Knead until you have a cohesive, elastic dough.

3. Divide the dough into four equal parts and roll out each on a floured surface into rectangular shapes, each the size of your baking tray.

4. Place the first layer on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Spread one-third of the apricot jam over it, then sprinkle one-third of the sugar-mixed ground walnuts. Continue with the second and third layers, adding jam and sugared walnuts on each. Place the fourth layer on top and pierce it with a fork. This prevents the dough from rising too much during baking.

5. Let the pastry rest in a warm place for an hour, then preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (356 degrees Fahrenheit). Bake for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown.

6. Allow the pastry to cool until warm.

7. Meanwhile, for the no-cook chocolate glaze, mix together the powdered sugar and Dutch cocoa powder. Add hot water and oil, and stir until smooth. Spoon the glaze onto the zserbó and smooth it out.

8. Let it completely set before slicing and serving.



So Bors



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