My twist on the classic red velvet cake takes the form of a roulade rolled around a silky white chocolate cream. To disguise the red color from unsuspecting guests, I dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar. Only when you slice the roulade do you see the cake’s shocking color.–Flo Braker
LC Thank You, Merriam-Webster Note
roulade |roōˈläd| noun a dish cooked or served in the form of a roll, typically made from a flat piece of meat, fish, or sponge cake, spread with a soft filling and rolled up into a spiral. ORIGIN French, from rouler “to roll.”
Red Velvet Cake Roll Recipe
Hands-On Time: 45 minutes | Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes | Makes 12 to 14 servings
- For the cake
- 1 cup (4 1/2 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened natural cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon apple cider or white vinegar
- 4 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
- 3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon liquid red food coloring (1/2 fluid ounce)
- For the white chocolate–cream cheese filling
- One 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
- 5 ounces white chocolate, melted
- 2 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup (1 1/4 ounces) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup (4 to 5 ounces) red raspberries, picked over for stems (optional)
- For decoration
- Confectioners’ sugar
- Red raspberries
- Make the cake
- 1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Coat a small area in the center of a 15 1/2-by-10 1/2-by-1-inch pan (jelly-roll pan) with nonstick spray. Line the pan with aluminum foil, pressing the foil into the contours of the pan and leaving a 2-inch overhang at each short end. Butter the foil and then flour it, tapping out any excess flour.
- 2. Sift together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, stir together the milk, vanilla extract, and vinegar. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-low speed until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and add the granulated sugar in a steady stream. Continue to beat until light in color and fluffy in texture, about 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- 3. With the mixer on medium speed, add the egg slowly, about 1 tablespoon at a time, beating after each addition until incorporated and stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Reduce the speed to the lowest setting and add the flour mixture in 2 or 3 additions alternately with the milk mixture in 1 or 2 additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing after each addition only until incorporated smoothly. Stop the mixer after each addition and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the food coloring and mix until the coloring is completely and evenly incorporated into the batter. Immediately spoon the batter into the prepared pan, spreading it evenly with a rubber spatula.
- 4. Bake the cake until it’s set on top and springs back when lightly pressed in the center, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack. If necessary, run a thin knife blade around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake. Carefully lift the foil overhang and transfer the cake to a wire rack. Without delay, place a sheet of foil over the cake and manipulate the foil to make a shallow tent to hold in the moisture as the cake cools. Let cool for about 45 minutes before you begin to assemble the dessert.
- Make the white chocolate-cream cheese filling
- 5. In a bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium-low speed until smooth. Pour in half the chocolate and beat until smooth, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape the bowl. Pour in the remaining chocolate and beat just until combined. Add the butter, sugar, and almond extract and beat until smooth and creamy. You should have about 1 1/3 cups. Use immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to overnight. (Bring to room temperature and beat with a rubber spatula, small whisk, or fork until smooth and creamy before using.)
- Assemble the cake
- 6. Remove the foil from the top of the cake. Transfer the cake and its bottom sheet of foil to the work surface, placing it so that one of its long sides is parallel to the edge of the surface closest to you. Place another long sheet of aluminum foil on the work surface nearby.
- 7. Using an offset spatula, spread 1 cup plus about 2 tablespoons filling evenly over the cake, leaving a 1/2-inch border uncovered on the long side farthest from you. (Any leftover filling makes a good kitchen snack for the baker, especially with a few berries.) Strew the raspberries, if using, on the filling along the length of the cake.
- 8. Begin rolling the cake by flipping the edge nearest you over onto itself. Then, with the aid of the foil that extends beyond the short sides, roll up the cake lengthwise until you reach the far long side. As you work, wrap the foil around the roll to assist in rounding the shape (otherwise the cake will stick to your hands). To ensure the roll is uniform, place the roll in its foil across the bottom third of a 24-inch-long piece of parchment paper, bring the top edge of the paper toward you, and drape it over the cake roll, allowing a 2-inch overhang.
- 9. Place the edge of a rimless baking sheet at a 45-degree angle to the roll and your work surface. Apply pressure against the roll, trapping the 2-inch overhang, and push while simultaneously pulling the bottom portion of paper toward you. This push-pull motion creates a resistance that results in compressing the log into a uniform shape. If any cracks appeared as you rolled the cake, they are consolidated in this compression and disappear from view.
- 10. Carefully lift the roll in the aluminum foil and set it, seam side down, on the fresh sheet of foil. Wrap the cake securely in the foil. Transfer the foil-wrapped roll to the baking sheet or shallow tray and refrigerate for about 30 minutes to help set the filling.
- To serve
- 11. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and peel off and discard the foil. Carefully lift the roll onto a serving plate with the aid of a long, wide spatula or a rimless baking sheet. (If not serving right away, cover loosely with plastic wrap to keep the cake’s surface from drying out and return to the refrigerator to serve the same day.) Dust the cake with powdered sugar. Using a serrated knife and a sawing motion, cut the roll into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Center each portion on a dessert plate. Accompany with the raspberries.
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:
Red Velvet Cake Roll Recipe © 2008 Flo Braker. Photo © 2008 Scott Peterson. All rights reserved.