(This article appeared in the Summer 2020 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)
This is my go-to recipe that is simple and tasty. Most importantly, it has sentimental value because it’s a sweet creation I used to make with my mother as a child. It’s also the recipe I most recently used that took me into the final round of Food Network’s Chopped Sweets!
Yield: 10 servings
Vanilla Bean Roulette
- 200 g eggs, room temperature
- 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp vanilla bean seeds and pulp
- 140 g all-purpose flour
- 120 g confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- Preheat oven to 375˚F. Grease a 10” x 15” x 1” pan, then line with parchment paper and lightly grease top of parchment.
- Place the eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on high for 2-3 minutes until thick and pale in color. Add vanilla extract and vanilla bean seeds to eggs and continue to whisk for another 4-5 minutes, until the mixture has doubled in size.
- While the eggs are whisking, sift the all-purpose flour, confectioners’ sugar, and baking powder together at least 5 times (this will give you a light and fluffy cake). Reduce mixer speed and gradually add dry ingredients. Mix until just combined (do not overmix, or you will get a flat cake). Immediately pour the batter into the prepared pan and using a spatula, gently guide the batter to all four corners making sure the entire pan is covered evenly. Bake for 8-10 minutes; the cake is done when the top is light golden brown and the center springs back when lightly touched. If necessary, carefully run a knife all around the pan to separate the cake from the sides. Dust the top of the cake with confectioners’ sugar and cover the cake completely with a clean cloth. Flip the cake over so that it is on top of the cloth, and gently peel off parchment from cake. Starting at the shorter edge, roll up the cake (along with the cloth) and let cool.
Strawberry Mascarpone Cream
- 120 g heavy cream
- 25 g granulated sugar
- 170 g mascarpone
- 1 Tbs lemon juice
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- 200 g diced strawberries
- Place the heavy cream and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat until stiff peaks form. Add the mascarpone cheese, lemon juice, vanilla extract and salt and beat until combined and smooth. (Reserve 1/3 of the mascarpone cream in a piping bag for plate-up garnishing). Fold the diced strawberries into the remaining 2/3 of the mascarpone cream.
- Once the cake is cool, unroll gently and spread cake evenly with the filling. Starting at the shorter end, carefully roll up into a log shape with the seam side down. Wrap it up with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours before slicing and serving.
- 250 g strawberries
- 100 g granulated sugar
Cut out the green tops of the strawberries and slice them in half. Place the strawberries into a saucepan with the sugar, cover with a lid, and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and push the mixture through a fine sieve. Refrigerate until cake is ready to serve.
- Fresh strawberries
Place a 1” slice of roulette cake on its side on a plate. Cut fresh strawberries crosswise in thin slices and cover sides of the roulette with the strawberries. Using the reserved 1/3 mascarpone cream, pipe extra mascarpone cream on top and garnish with fresh strawberry halves or decoration of choice. Pour the Strawberry Consommé around the prepared strawberry mascarpone cream roulette right before serving.