Saturday, September 1, 2012
Blueberry Roulade . . . or make it Raspberry!
This is so good, so easy, and so versatile I've made it three times in the past week now. And Labor Day will be four. No, I didn't polish them all off myself, but they were a hit at an intern's farewell party and then a beach picnic. Nobody believes me that they're a cinch to pull off. "It's just a sheet cake," I say, "filled with cream and jam and fruit and rolled up." "Rolled up?" they ask. "How do you roll up a cake?"
The cake itself is almost fat free -- no butter or oil in the recipe, just eggs. There's the cream in the filling, but it still comes off feeling light. And that was really welcome after the ultra-rich Pecan Bars I made last time. This is just what a summer dessert ought to be, seasonal fruit in a cake that doesn't weigh you down. And the cake is easy, going something like this: Beat eggs with sugar, then fold in flour with other dry ingredients, scrape into a pan, and bake.
This blueberries and cream variation was really good, but my favorite was the raspberries and cream version. Dress the cake simply with a dusting of confectioners sugar, or pipe whipped cream on top. Another possibility? Come back tomorrow to see how to make this into a Chocolate Raspberry Roulade with whipped chocolate ganache.
Adapted from Jelly Roll recipe in The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion: The All-Purpose Baking Cookbook
For the sheet cake
¾ cup (3 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
¾ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
¾ cup (5¼ ounces) sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the filling
½ cup (about 6 ounces) blueberry preserves or raspberry jam
1 cup (8 ounces) heavy cream
1 tbs confectioners' sugar
1 cup fresh blueberries or raspberries
Preheat oven to 400°. Line the bottom of a 10-by-15-inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper. [I used an 11-by-17-inch pan because it's what I already have, but you must reduce the baking time by 2 to 3 minutes.]
In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs using the wire whisk attachment until foamy. Sprinkle in the sugar gradually, beating all the while, and continue beating until the batter is very thick and light lemon in color, 3 to 8 minutes. The batter will have doubled in volume. When the batter is sufficiently aerated it should fall from the beaters in a thick ribbon and mound on top of the remaining batter in the bowl temporarily, before being reabsorbed. Just before you stop beating the batter, add the vanilla.
Gently fold in the flour mixture, using a rubber spatula or whisk. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake the cake for 12 to 14 minutes, until it's golden brown and springy to the touch. Remove the cake from the oven and invert it onto a (non-terry) dish towel that's been lightly sprinkled with confectioners' sugar. Peel off the paper, and using a knife or pizza wheel, trim the crust edges of the cake, if necessary. Starting with a short end, roll the cake and towel together into a log, and cool completely on a wire rack. Yes, it will cool while wrapped inside a towel, and fairly quickly too.
Just before serving, unroll the cake. Using the wire whisk attachment, beat the cream with the confectioners' sugar until it holds stiff peaks.
Spread the jam on top of the cake, going all the way to the edges. Repeat with the whipped cream. Sprinkle the blueberries or raspberries on top of the whipped cream. Re-roll the cake, without the towel this time, finishing with the seam side down. Slice the ends off for a better look. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar or pipe more whipped cream on top.