Monday, August 23, 2010

Making "Jelly Rolls" with Jelly Rolls

I had never heard of a jelly roll until last year when I was planning on making another pumpkin pie. I looked at the canned pumpkin can and there was this beautiful dessert just taunting me. I decided to try it, and the reward was definitely worth the work. The jelly roll is essentially a sponge-like cake with a creamy filling that makes it low-fat as well as adaptable to any taste.

I kind of have been on a jelly roll kick this weekend, making them to give away. Just making them is so much fun and there are lots of ways to make them your own. This blog is going to have two really delicious, moist, "jelly roll making" jelly roll recipes.

Classic Jelly Roll (This recipe has been in our family recipe cards for years)
5 eggs
1 c sugar
1/4 c water
1 tsp vanilla
1 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
salt to taste
Preserves of your choice, my rule of thumb: if it has seeds in it, you know it's gonna taste good!
Powered sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a jelly roll pan and line with wax paper. Then grease the wax paper really well, especially in the corners.

  2. Beat eggs, sugar, water and vanilla.

  3. Slowly add flour, baking soda and salt.

  4. Pour into prepared pan and bake 30 mins or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Meanwhile sift powdered sugar onto a clean kitchen towel (everywhere! and I mean sift!)

  5. Immediately flip baked cake upside down onto sugared towel. Carefully remove wax paper and throw away. Slowly roll up cake into a spiral using the towel as a guide. Do not roll towel into the cake! Still wrapped in a towel, lift and place on a wire rack to cool for an hour.

  6. Slowly unroll cake and spread preserves all over cake, within a 1" margin around the edges (too much filling and it will spill out).

  7. Re-roll the cake into a spiral again and let set for another 1/2 hour.

  8. Sift powdered sugar on top, slice and serve.

Banana Nut Roll (from BHG cookbook, aka, never fails!)
No one turns a slice of this down...unless they are allergic to nuts. Then, how dare you try to hurt someone with a baked good!

5 eggs room temp
1/2 all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
11 oz cream cheese softened
1 c sugar
3 tbl milk
1 c mashed banana
3/4 c finely chopped walnuts
6 bowls (3 small, 2 medium, 1 large), mixer/beaters, spatula, jelly roll pan or cookie sheet with edges

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 15"x10"x1" pan or a jelly roll pan with Pam. Lay down a piece of wax paper and pres to seal to bottom and sides. Spray wax paper really well especially in the corners. Set aside.

  2. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, together in a small bowl and set aside.

  3. Cream cream cheese and 1/2 c sugar until smooth. Add one egg and 3 tbl of milk until slightly runny.

  4. Spread cream cheese into prepared pan (this will be the filling). Set aside.

  5. Separate 4 eggs.

  6. For cake, begin by beating eggs yolks and vanilla for 5 mins or until think and lemony colored. Gradually add in 1/3 cup sugar, beating on high until sugar is dissolved. Mix in banana and walnuts.

  7. Grab the large bowl, wash beaters really well and add egg whites. Beat egg whites on medium until soft tips form (tips curl). Gradually add 1/2 sugar, beating until stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). 

  8. Fold gently, egg yolk/banana mixture into the whites. Sprinkle flour mixture on top and gently fold until combined.

  9. Carefully spoon batter over cream cheese filling in pan. 

  10. Bake 20-23 mins or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Meanwhile, take a clean kitchen towel and sift powdered sugar all over (and I mean all over! and I mean sift!). When cake is done, immediately flip cake upside down onto towel. Remove wax paper and slowly use the towel to roll cake into a spiral. Don't roll the towel into the cake!

  11. Still in a towel, lift roll to a wire rack to cool at least an hour. Plate roll, sift powdered sugar on top or spread a simple glaze (powdered sugar and enough milk to make it runny) and sprinkle with walnuts.  

These two recipes are all you really need to mix and match to make delicious Jelly Rolls.

Make a pumpkin jelly roll with the Classic recipe, but throw in 1/2 can of canned pumpkin and some pumpkin spice. Prepare the cream cheese filling from the Banana Nut Roll and it's a savory and sweet recipe.

Make the Classic recipe and your own preserves or thickened pie filling for a world of options: raspberry, blueberry, strawberry, rhubarb, crab apple, apple, peanut butter and jelly, figs, pumpkin custard, chocolate mousse....
Make the Classic recipe and spread softened ice cream instead of jelly, freeze for 30 mins or until firm and you have a homemade ice cream cake!

You really have so many choices, I'm amazed we don't see more jelly rolls walking around....