almond & strawberry roulade

gluten-free almond & strawberry roulade

During our trials the other day, Eirini & I also tested out a recipe for a cake that the Bride & Groom (for one of the three events) had requested.

I’m not going to lie… it was completely disastrous, & nothing like what they had specified.

What they had told us they wanted was something that wasn’t actually a cake. At least not in the traditional sense. They didn’t want chocolate. In fact, they wanted it light, fruity with strawberry, not too sweet, and a layer of almond nougat somewhere in the middle.

What we ended up was this very dense layer of vanilla-caramel custard which was quite sweet, a layer of almond meringue which didn’t really stand up against the other flavors, and a very sticky layer of strawberry. It was miles off.

I assure you, we were not discouraged.

We decided to divide & conquer! Eirini undertook the task of pulling apart & reassembling the recipe to achieve exactly what they asked for. I on the other hand decided that maybe they didn’t actually know what they wanted (sometimes we have an idea, but don’t know how to visualize it). With that in mind, I decided to take the specifications & flavors that they   had outlined for us & give them a new edge.

In my mind, the roulade was the perfect way to go. Technically it’s a cake, but the majority of it is whipped egg whites & yolks which gives it this wonderfully spongy & light texture. I also did half the dry ingredients with almond flour & added a touch of bitter almond to really bring out the flavor. Not overly sweet, not too cakey, kind of perfect. Then there’s the chantilly cream filling, light, fluffy, very little sugar, perfect to add a hint of vanilla too. & lets not forget the light layer of strawberry to add some intensity to those more subtly flavors & textures.

It took me three attempts to get it exactly the way I wanted it, but overall I think I hit the nail on the head. Eirini & I will be presenting both options to them on Wednesday at the tasting along with the rest of the menu. Wish us luck!

Ingredients, roulade:
– 80g gluten-free all purpose flour
– 65g almond flour
– 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
– 4 egg whites
– 1/4 tsp salt
– 50g sugar
– 4 egg yolks
– 50g sugar
– 1/2 tsp almond extract

Directions, roulade:
1. grease a with butter & line with parchment paper, set aside. Preheat oven to 175C
2. place the flour, almond flour & xanthan in a food processor & process until it is a fine powder.
3. place the egg whites, salt & sugar in a bowl & beat until still peaks form.
4. in a separate bowl, place the egg yolks, sugar & almond extract. Beat on high speed until the yolks become very light & creamy in texture, this should take about 5 minutes or more.
5. sift in half of the dry ingredients into the egg yolks & fold in gently. Add in half of the egg white meringue & fold in gently. Sift in the rest of the dry ingredients & add the rest of the meringue to the yolks. Fold the mixture together until everything has been evenly distributed.
6. spread the mixture onto your lined tin in an even layer, bake for 15 minutes.
7. remove from the oven, whilst the cake is still hot, transfer it onto a dish towel that has been dusted with sugar. Roll the cake up into a log & allow it to cool completely.

Ingredients, cream filling:
– 30ml milk, cold
– 3/4 tsp powdered gelatin
– 250ml heavy cream
– 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
– 30g icing sugar

Directions, cream filling:
1. place the milk & the gelatin in a glass & allow the gelatin to bloom for 10 minutes.
2. combine the cream, vanilla & sugar into a bowl & beat until stiff.
3. once the gelatin has bloomed, microwave the mixture in short bursts, stirring between each burst until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Add the gelatin to the whipped cream & gently fold the two together. Place the cream in the fridge until it’s time to spread it on the cake. Make sure to give it a stir every 10 minutes so as it doesn’t set.

Ingredients, strawberry filling:
– 550g fresh strawberries
– 2 tbs sugar
– 1 tbs lemon juice
– 40ml water, cold
– 2 tsp gelatin

Directions, strawberry filling:
1. combine the strawberries, sugar & lemon in a food processor & process until smooth. Transfer the berries to a pot & cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.
2. 10 minutes into the cooking process, place the gelatin in the water & put that in the fridge to bloom for 10 minutes. Once bloomed, add it to the strawberry mixture that is cooking & stir in until all the gelatin has dissolved. Remove the strawberries from the heat & transfer to a bowl. Place in the fridge & allow it to cool for 10 minutes.
3. now that the cake is cool & the cream & strawberry fillings are ready, gently unroll the cake. Spread the strawberry filling onto the cake first making sure to do it in a nice even coating over the entire surface. Next, spread the cream mixture on top of that, again doing it in a nice even coating across the entire surface. Now, gently roll the cake back up & put it in the fridge for three hours to allow the gelatin to set.
4. if you wish to decorate the cake, melt some dark chocolate & drizzle it over the top.

……..for a full history of our recipes, check out our archives. For the more sensitive tummies, check out our gluten-free archives….. and if you’re just interested in something pretty, check out our designed page.


2 thoughts on “almond & strawberry roulade

    • Thank you Patricia, it was absolutely delicious… & I’m usually a fan of heavier cakes. If I hadn’t been asked to come up with an idea for the wedding we were catering, I don’t think it would have ever come across my mind to make this.

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