Today’s post is once again inspired by the Great British Bake Off. Why do I love that show? I think it’s not only because it’s about baking, or that I adore Sue Perkins; it’s that it is such a sharp contrast to Masterchef Australia. Where the contestants in the latter are locked up for 6 months, in the Great British Bake Off, two of the three tasks are revealed in advance and contestants are given time to practice. There is a celebration in their cooking, and Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood are there to provide advice. It’s also a aesthetically pleasing show and I often weep at the site of the pretty coloured kitchen aids.
I watch the show with my mum, and we were recently watching the show where the technical bake challenge was a chocolate roulade, and my mother presented me with this same challenge. I happily accepted. It would appear from a recent Guardian Online article that I am not the only one inspired to bake by this show; sales of cake tins and muffin trays have risen by 15%.
I definitely would have not been able to tackle this challenge without the knowledge I gained from the show. A Swiss Roll and a Roulade are two separate cakes. A Swiss Roll is essentially a light sponge and contains more flour. It must be rolled in baking paper when warm and then filled and rolled again. A Roulade contains less flour and must be rolled when filled and completely cool.
I was surprised at how easy it was, however this post should also be a lesson in reading all the steps before commencing a recipe. Once again, I did not have any cocoa in the house (I keep forgetting to buy some when I visit the supermarket) so I decided to make a Jam Roll and used the recipe from the Joy Of Cooking. How did I misread the recipe? Well you will just have to read on to see…
I had all the ingredients on hand. Now, for those who have the Joy of Cooking you would know that there is no master ingredient list. Each ingredient is listed above the step it is required. I tend to skim read recipes when I am making them. When I first read this recipe I saw “dry ingredients’ and “beat in a large bowl” and “4 egg yolks”. I made the catastrophic mistake of mixing the egg yolks with the dry ingredients.
Now, I’m sure you are reading this going NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MELLLLLLLLLLLLLL!
This is what not to do.
Unfortunatley I had to discard that failure. I read the entire recipe and was able to start again, properly this time. The eggs are separated. In a stand mixer (unfortunately mine is not a Kitchen Aid 😦 ) beat the egg yolks for about a minute. Slowly beat in the sugar until the mixture is pale and thick. On a low speed add the flour, baking powder and salt and beat until smooth.
In a separate bowl beat the egg whites until soft peaks are formed.
A tip I read in a cookbook is add about a 1/4 of the egg whites to the mixture and make sure it’s all incorporated and then fold in the remaining egg whites. It makes folding in the remaining egg whites easy and helps maintain a light and airy mixture.
Transfer the mixture to a slice tin. I couldn’t tell you what the measurements of the tray I used. It’s a tray my father created for pizza’s and I use for a lot of things. I sprayed the bottom with cooking spray before adding baking paper on top to ease the transition out of the tin once the cake is cooked.
Bake in an moderately hot oven for 8-12 minutes (depending on your oven). The cake should spring back at you and a tester should come out clean.
As soon as you are able to (ideally very soon after it is out of the oven) transfer the cake to aluminium foil that has been sprinkled with icing sugar. Measure the foil before hand to ensure it exceeds the size of the cake. You have to let it cool completely. This step is crucial!
As you can see I had some slight issues with the cake sticking to the side of the tin so when it was cool I trimmed the edges with a bread knife.
Whip the cream. I used about 1/3 of the bottle and it was probably a bit much.
Spread the jam on the cake and add the cream on top.
Make a small cut about 2cm (.75inch) on both sides of the cake. This will assist the cake when you first roll it. The next bit is a bit tricky to explain. Using the foil and your hands slowly but tightly roll the cake. I found the use of a pallet knife to be beneficial in keeping the roll as tight as I could. There are bound to be some cracks – that’s normal and adds to the charm of the roulade.
To serve tranfer the cake to a platter. You can dust with icing sugar. As I already had cream in the roulade and a sweet jam I omitted this option. It’s a lovely light cake that looks lovely on a plate. I was expecting to be more daunted by the challenge but its simplicity surprised me. I would definitely like to try a Swiss Roll next.
Jam and Cream Roulade
4 egg yolks
3/4 Sifted Flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup of Sugar
4 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup of sugar
1. Prehat the oven to 190C (375F) and line a slice tin with baking paper.
2. Whisk the egg yolks on medium speed for about a minute. Slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar until the mixture is pale and thick.
3. On a low speed gradually add the flour, salt and baking powder. Mix until combined.
4. In a clean bowl whisk egg whites and cream of tartar. Slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar until and whisk until soft peaks form.
5. Add 1/4 of the egg white mixture to the cake mixture. Stir until thoroughly combined. Fold in the remaining mixture.
6. Transfer the mixture to the tin, being careful not loose too much air from the mixture. Bake for 8-12 minutes or until a cake tester when removed is clean and the cake springs back.
7. On a clean bench lay out aluminium foil and dust with icing sugar. When the cake is removed from the oven invert the cake onto the foil.
8. Allow the cake to cool completely.
9. Spead the jam and cream onto the cake.
10. Slowly roll the cake. Keep the cake wrapped in foil and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
11. Remove from foil and serve!