As part of my dessert entry into a potluck style New Year's celebration, I decided to make two popular Russian/Ukrainian cakes. This post will feature one of them; namesake of Ukraine's capital. The cake is essentially an egg white/nut flour base, similar to merengue in texture, with butter cream frosting.
One version of this cake's history is that it was invented at a confection factory in Kiev in the late 1950's, as a result of an accidental mismeasure. Another version of the story is that it was invented by the master-chef at said factory. Personally, I find the taste / recipe for the cake layers too similar to Provencalcountry-style macarons that have been around since 1700s, to believe my own version of the story.
I took a shortcut on this cake, and used store-bought layers.
Whip room temperature butter together with condensed milk. After 2 minutes of whipping, slowly whip in the cognac. Separate out half the mixture. This will go between one set of cake layers. Whip in the cocoa into the other half - this will be the top layer and will cover the sides.
Traditionally the cake is decorated with hazelnuts, shaved chocolate and fruit jellies, but I stuck to shavings on top and sliced almonds on the sides.