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Golden Walnut Dumplings – Aranygaluska

Hungarian monkeybread
I meant to make this for a long time and can’t remember when I had it last.
Well, it is very nice! A perfect Sunday lunch family treat. The Hungarian name “arany-galuska” here literally means “golden nuggets” or maybe “glorified noodles” but they probably best translate as “dumplings” in English. The toasted sugary walnuts and the baked, warm little doughballs with a hint of lemon zest served with some cool white wine custard (for the grown ups) – give an almost festive feel, so much so that Nancy Reagan famously popularised a similar recipe, serving the “Hungarian Coffee cake” or monkey bread at Christmas.

Ingredients (4-5 servings)

For the dough

  • 330 g (3 cups) flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • half lemon zest, finely grated
  • 250ml (1 cup)milk
  • 30g (1.1oz) melted butter
  • 1 sachet of dried “quick” yeast (7g)

For the layering

  • approx. 100g finely ground walnut (~ 1.5 cups)
  • 4 tbsp icing sugar
  • 80g (~ 3 oz) melted butter

For the Sauce

  • thick vanilla custard
  • dry white wine
    ( Approximate ratio I used: four parts vanilla custard mixed with one part wine, start with mixing a little wine in and you can always add more, just have to watch not to overdilute the custard, should retain a bit of thickness.)


  1. Make a soft elastic dough, could use an electric mixer’s dough hook, a bread machine or do it by hand which will take  a bit of effort but perfectly doable.
  2. Cover and set aside in a lightly oiled bowl at room temperature, let it rise and double in size, 1.5-2 hours.
  3. On a well floured surface, flatten out the dough evenly by hand to about an inch thickness.
  4. With a cookie cutter (here I used a 5cm/2” diameter one), make the dough balls. Easier and just as fine if you cut up the dough into square shapes with a knife.
  5. Butter a cake tin well (I used a 20cm/12” diameter cake tin), then dip each dough ball into melted butter, roll in the ground sugary walnuts and place in the cake tin, do two layers, just loosely thrown together.
  6. Cover with a tea towel and let it rest and further rise. Meanwhile preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
  7. Bake for about 40 minutes until golden, check a few times and cover the top with foil if needed to protect the top from over browning.
  8. CUSTARD: I flirted with the idea of making my own with egg yolks, vanilla, corn flour and cream or milk, but ended up using shop bought fresh custard. What I did is mixed it with a bit of white wine and it made a really nice difference, tasted festive a bit like brandy butter.

Hungarian monkeybread recipe

monkeybread recipe

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