Recipe Reveal: Lemon Roulade
Springtime is officially here now that the Peepers are singing, so when it comes to baking for a special occasion, my thoughts drift towards things that are light in appearance but still pack a nice punch of flavor.
A Lemon Roulade (roulade is simply French for “roll”) fits the bill — creamy lemon cream rolled up inside a soft spongy cake. A Lemon Roulade not only tastes great, but guests are impressed with its jelly roll appearance. Don’t tell them how simple it is to make. Let them think you worked extra hard to make a special dessert just for them.
In the recipe below, note that I use jarred lemon curd for the filling. There’s a reason for this. I’ve made homemade lemon curd (basically egg yolks, sugar, butter, lemon juice) numerous times, and each time it came out tasting eggy, and not the flavor I wanted. So for this filling I used a good quality jarred lemon curd, and have no misgivings about it. I’d rather use something I know is good than waste ingredients.
To perk up the flavor of the jarred curd, I added some fresh grated lemon rind to it. The results — fantastic! I intend to keep practicing making homemade lemon curd though, until I get it right.
Until then, enjoy this easy-to-make Lemon Roulade. Perfect for your Easter table too.
6 eggs, separated
1/4 cup water
1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1. Place egg whites in large bowl; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with parchment paper; grease the paper (I use non-stick spray), dust with flour, and set aside.
3. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.
4. In a large mixing bowl, beat egg yolks and water on high speed 5 minutes or until thick and lemon-colored. Gradually beat in 1 cup sugar. Stir in vanilla.
5. Gradually add the sifted dry ingredients to the yolk mixture and mix well (batter will be very thick). Pour and scrape yolk mixture into a large bowl. Clean mixing bowl and beaters thoroughly to use for the egg whites.
6. In the mixing bowl, add cream of tartar to the egg whites; beat on medium until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining ½ cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high after each addition until sugar is dissolved. Continue beating until soft glossy peaks form.
7. Mix one large spoon of the egg whites into the yolk batter, to loosen. Then fold in the remaining whites.
8. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan. Bake 15-18 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
9. Cool 5 minutes in the pan. Invert cake onto a kitchen towel dusted with confectioners’ sugar. Roll up cake in the towel, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
10. Make Lemon Cream Filling.
11. Gently peel parchment paper off cake. Unroll cake, and trim the dry outside edges from it with a sharp knife (These edges are for the cook to sample).
12. Spread lemon cream filling evenly on top of cake. Roll it up starting with the short side. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
13. When ready to serve, dust top of the cake with confectioners’ sugar. Cut a small slice from the end before serving to reveal good-looking roulade. Optional: Garnish with fresh raspberries. Yield: 8-10 servings.
Lemon Cream Filling
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon confectioner’s sugar (the cornstarch in the sugar helps keep the cream firm in the filling)
1 cup lemon curd
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (or to taste)
1. Place lemon curd in a large bowl. (I unabashedly use a good quality jarred lemon curd.) Stir in as much grated lemon rind as necessary to give a pronounced lemon flavor.
2. In a mixing bowl, whip the cream and confectioner’s sugar until stiff.
3. Fold JUST as much whipped cream as necessary into the lemon curd to make enough filling for the cake. To keep filling firm, don’t use too much whipped cream. May only need about half the whipped cream, depending on the texture of the curd. Refrigerate remaining whipped cream.