Summer fruit is here! and there! and yes, everywhere! There is so much coming into season right now it's hard to know where to start. Since strawberries are abundant and the price is right it seems like a good place. Friends coming to dinner - none wheat-intolorant - I decided to go for fully loaded cake - wheat and sugar (although it's not that high in sugar), but something light.
Roll cakes are fun to make, and not that difficult. They often have a 'sponge cake' texture, making them easy to work with. I used a recipe I haven't used before from a big, beautiful cookbook I have called Cooking A to Z.
I took lots of pictures because I thought I might be helpful if you've never made a rolled cake before. The recipe is below the pictures.
I like to get everything out and ready to go when I'm baking. I chopped the strawberries before I started mixing everything, and I measured out my dry ingredients.
Like many cakes, you really have to beat the butter and eggs for a few minutes until the batter is light and fluffy. I lined my jelly roll pan with parchment paper (the recipe actually suggests greasing the pan and then putting the paper in. I also greased the paper, and then cut the corners so I could fold them down. Pour in the batter.
Then gently spread it out. An offset spatula works best for this.
Bake for just 15 minutes, and there you have it, ready to rock and roll.
The tricky part is turning it out without breaking it. I managed to do it without breaking it. I turned it out on to a piece of parchment paper sprinkled with powdered sugar, which was layed out onto a clean towel. I then rolled it up tightly in the parchment paper, and then rolled the 'roll' in the towel to hold it in place while it cooled.
While the cake was cooking, I mixed the whipping cream with a little powdered sugar and vanilla using my stand mixer (with the bowl chilled) which takes about a minute :-). Then gently folded in the chopped strawberries.
Once cooled, I gently unrolled the cake, and spread it with the whipped cream and strawberries with my handy dandy offset spatula, leaving about an inch or so around the edges.
Carefully roll it up again (making sure the seam side is down), sprinkle with powdered sugar, and refrigerate until your ready to serve.
Or.... you might want to cut a little piece off to make sure it tastes OK. *ahem....*
OK. Your turn.
Sponge Cake Roll
- 4 eggs, separated
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar (optional)
- 2/3 cup cake flour, sifted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 11" x 15" jelly-roll pan, and then line with parchment paper. (I greased the parchment paper as well)
- In mixer bowl, beat egg yolks for about 30 seconds, and then add most of the sugar (holding back a couple of tablespoons) and beat about 4 or 5 minutes, until them mixture is thick and falls from the beaters in a "ribbon."
- Add vanilla and beat.
- In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until just foamy, and then add salt and optional cream of tartar. Beat to soft peaks, and then add remaining sugar and beat until still peaks form.
- Fold the flour gently into the egg mixture, 1/3 at a time.
- Fold about 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter, to lighten. Then gently fold in remaining egg whites.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and spread to cover entire pan using an offset spatula.
- Bake about 15 minutes, until the top springs back when gently pressed with finger. Let the cake rest in the pan for about 5 minutes.
- Carefully turn the cake onto a piece of parchment paper sprinkled with powdered sugar, and carefully roll the cake tightly in the parchment paper. Roll again in a clean towel to hold in place and let cool on a wire rack.
- Once the cake is completely cooled, unroll, spread on the filling to within an inch of the edges, and re-roll. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and refrigerate until ready to serve.
See? Wasn't that easy? And the beauty of rolled cakes is that you can fill it with so many different things - chocolate, almond paste, jam, etc. It's like having a brand new cake everytime you bake it.