Let's get to it.
This was basically an all-day affair, so if you're planning on making it, clear your schedule. It wouldn't take nearly so long if you didn't make it into a roulade, but I did. Next time I'm planning to just make the cake in muffin tins and treat them as short cakes, of a sort.
On that note, you may want to clear your schedule for this entry about the cake. Seriously. Around 30 photos ahead.
I started with the cake.
In case you were wondering, I rely heavily on my laptop while I'm baking:
I keep all my recipes on it, and I play music on it. It's partly responsible for any greatness that comes out of my kitchen. Thank you, little Toshiba.
Back to the cake. The first thing the recipe asked me to do was the to make really really really thick cocoa.
I also separated some eggs.
Okay, yea, I really cheated. I used a separator. Normally I don't, but there were a lot of eggs to separate.
I whisked the egg yolks:
And added the really thick cocoa, some brown sugar, and vanilla.
Finally, the flour went in, too.
I let that sit while I whipped up some egg whites:
Man. I love making meringue. It is so pretty. And tasty.
I added it in two batches to the chocolate mixture.
This took an unexpectedly long time. The chocolate mixture was really thick. Probably because I refused to follow the recipe and used brown sugar instead of white sugar. Or something. Who knows. Anyway, by the time it was all folded together, the egg whites had deflated more than they were supposed to, I think.
But, I poured it into pan anyway, and spread it out with a spatula, and put it in the oven.
While it was baking, I completely covered a tea towel in confectioner's sugar.
How weird is that?
When the cake came out of the oven, it started shrinking!
I don't know why, but whatevski. It smelled goooood.
I very carefully (and quickly) flipped the cake over onto the sugar-covered tea towel and took off the parchment paper.
And then rolled the whole thing up together, and let it cool on a wire rack.
I did several things while it was cooling. One was to make an extremely unsuccessful attempt at a healthy filling for this cake. The recipe called for a whooole bunch of whipping cream, which is not light, that's for sure. So I thought I would try making something with Quark. Oh my goodness. It went so badly I don't even want to talk about it. Finally I just caved and bought whipping cream. I also hulled and washed strawberries, and pureed some of them, too.
When everything was ready, the assembly of the cake began. I was nervous that when I unrolled the cake it would be in pieces and all dry and gross. But it was still nice:
I started by spreading the pureed strawberries over it.
Then spread on the whipped cream:
And finally, placed on some sliced up strawberries:
I rolled it all back up, which was a little more difficult than I thought it would be. The strawberries wanted to escape.
This went in the fridge for a while, and while it chilled, I made a simple chocolate sauce of whipping cream and melted chocolate. I drizzled that on before I sliced up the cake. It looked so damned pretty when I started cutting it up.
I served each slice with some of the extra strawberry and chocolate sauces.
It went over very well.
This cake was delicious. The flavours were all simple, but very delicious all together. There was never a question about that, though, since it was strawberry, chocolate and whipped cream. As a said earlier, I'm not sure it was worth all the effort. Sure, a roulade is very pretty, but I'm not convinced that it wouldn't look just as pretty as little individual cakes, piled up with whipped cream and strawberries and topped with chocolate and strawberry drizzle. Just thinking about it is making me want to try it this weekend.
We have some slowly (but surely) softening strawberries in the fridge... and this might just put them to good use.
Chocolate Berry Roulade Cake with Fudge Drizzle
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
¼ cup boiling water
4 eggs, separated
½ cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup white sugar
1 cup sifted cake and pastry flour
½ cup icing sugar
1 ½ cups whipping cream
3 tablespoons icing sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups fresh berries*
100 g dark chocolate
½ cup heavy cream
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 10x15 inch jelly-roll pan with parchment paper or waxed paper coated with grease. Stir cocoa into pot of boiling water and let stand. In a mixing bowl, beat yolks with a mixer until thick and pale yellow. Slowly beat in ½ cup sugar, cocoa mixture, salt and vanilla. Beat in the flour. In another bowl, with clean beaters, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar. Continue beating until firm peaks form. Fold into flour mixture in two batches. Smoothly spread batter in jelly-roll pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until cake springs back in centre when gently touched. Meanwhile, heavily spread icing sugar over a clean tea towel. Run a knife around cake pan to loosen sides. Turn out onto tea towel and remove paper. Starting on the long side, roll up the cake and tea towel together. Completely cool cake wrapped in tea towel on a rack.
Beat whipping cream, icing sugar and vanilla together until firm peaks form. Place in refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes.
Completely melt chocolate in cream over low heat.
Unroll cooled cake, keeping on tea towel. If the cake is still warm, fan to cool. Spread filling to within 1 inch of all edges of the cake. Evenly top with berries. With the long side toward you, use the towel to help firmly roll up the cake – leave the towel out of the roll. Slide rolled cake onto a large baking sheet, seam-side down and cover with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 1 hour or up to one day.
To serve, transfer cold cake to a serving platter. Drizzle cold cake with some of the fudge sauce, and reserve the rest to drizzle on individual slices.
*I found this recipe in the LCBO Wine and Food magazine for June and it was all about blue berries. So, the original recipe was with blueberries, but any in season berries will work.