It is once again time for this month's We Should Cocoa hosted alternately by Chele of Chocolate Teapot and Choclette of Chocolate Log Blog, and after missing a couple due to dislikes and allergies I was thrilled when Chele announced that this months challenge was to be roulades. Actually, that's a slight lie, I was pleased to know that I'd be able to participate, but rather less pleased to be informed that I would be making a roulade.
Let me explain a little..... although necessary in much successful baking and essential in some, eggs are often my nemesis. It's definitely a love/hate relationship, particularly when it comes to either separating them (I can separate, it's just what happens next!) or making cakes that require lots of volume from egg - either whisking whole eggs or egg whites. The only other roulade I have ever attempted to make was many, many years ago and was a chocolate yule log (I've always loved chocolate!). I can't remember whose recipe I used, and I don't recall it cracking irreparably but the verdict delivered by T, as one of the chief tasters will never be forgotten (nor probably forgiven)...
'It's really dense and chewy, this...'
I think he meant it as a compliment. But it really wasn't the desired texture. I could see after baking as the cake sank into itself that it wasn't ever going to be a success (and I think I refused to eat any myself in protest) and those words just confirmed it. So I've never wanted to try again. Which leads us back to the challenge set by Chele this month. A real challenge!
I found a couple of recipes that I quite liked the look of and then adapted them to suit the size of cake tin I had (and if I'm really honest, the amount of ingredients I could bear to waste if it all came to nothing!). Thankfully, as you can see from the top picture, this was a success - I'm not sure that I've mastered the art of eggs, but I'm one little step closer!
Chocolate Roulade with Black Forest Buttercream
3 eggs (at room temperature)
85g light muscovado sugar
60g self raising flour
15g cocoa powder (Green and Blacks)
For the filling
Jar of good quality dark cherry jam (you won't need all of it)
1tbsp cocoa powder
2tbsp boiling water
250g icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
* I'm afraid I have shamelessly stolen this buttercream from Kate's Cakes and Bakes, a really lovely blog with some wonderful sweet treats - check it out. She describes this as a chocolate fudge frosting, but mine was more buttercream like - I think I beat it far too much rather than just stirring!
- Preheat the oven to Gas 5/190C. Grease and line a 20x30cm shallow tin with baking parchment.
- Beat the eggs and sugar for about 8-10 minutes until very thick and the beaters leave a trail. (I love my stand mixer!)
Mmm, thick and whippy!
- Sift the flour and cocoa powder onto the mixture and fold in carefully but thoroughly. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, as below:
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until firm.
- Remove from the oven and turn onto a wire rack. When slightly cooler (i.e. you can touch it without burning yourself) roll it up in parchment paper, allowing the parchment to be rolled inside the cake. Allow to cool completely.
- Make the buttercream by melting the chocolate and, separately, dissolving the cocoa in the boiling water. Combine the two.
- Cream the butter and sugar and then add the chocolate mixture and vanilla. Beat until soft and creamy.
- When the roulade is cool, unroll very gently and spread with the buttercream. Then blob on a generous amount of jam. Roll back up and dust with icing sugar.
- Marvel at your amazing creation!!!
Can you tell I was really, disproportionately proud of myself for managing to make this roulade?!? Admittedly it doesn't have the most number of turns that I've ever seen in a roll, but it definitely qualifies and I'm going to boast! It was light and moist and chocolatey, and the sweet buttercream and cherry jam were a yummy filling. Thanks for the challenge Chele!