Happy Holidays Everyone!
So I am going to make a buche de noel for our annual Christmas Eve dinner. My question is: can I make a jelly roll without using genoise or another type of sponge cake? I have never made a jelly roll with regular cake and I don't know if it would be sturdy enough to roll and what not. I really just do not like sponge cake, it is too dry and the texture isn't fluffy, or cakey enough for my taste. Any ideas for me?



betteirene December 23, 2010
Jelly Roll

3/4 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla or lemon extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Confectioners' sugar

Line a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with parchment paper. Grease the paper; set aside. In a large bowl, beat eggs for 3 minutes. Gradually add sugar and beat for 2 minutes or until mixture thickens. Add vanilla and blend well. Combine dry ingredients; stir into egg mixture by hand. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.
Bake at 375° for 15-17 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool for 5 minutes. Invert onto a cotton (not terrycloth) kitchen towel dusted with powdered sugar. Gently peel off parchment. Roll up cake in the towel jelly-roll style, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
Unroll cake; spread jam or jelly, fruit or custard filling, buttercream, or whipped cream (flavored and sweetened) evenly over cake to within 1/2 in. of edges. Roll up again. Place seam side down on a serving platter. Dust with powdered sugar or decorate with icing.

My notes say that this can be made into a chocolate roll by decreasing the flour to 1/2 cup and adding 1/4 cup of cocoa, but I've never tried this variation. I use Julia Child's genoise when I want a chocolate roll.
iuzzini December 22, 2010
I made a jelly roll with a pretty moist pumpkin cake and cream cheese frosting-- you could do a riff on the buche de noel and have it be a pumpkin log covered in cream cheese frosting snow. :)
drbabs December 22, 2010
Yup, that's what I was thinking, too.
RespectThePastry December 22, 2010
drbabs, thank you for respondsing, but because of the way this cake is prepared, it is basically a sponge cake. It is looking like i will just have to paint on a plethora of liquer/syrup and call it a day.
drbabs December 22, 2010
I found a recipe for a buche de Noel with a flourless cake, but I imagine it will also be pretty dry. Look at this and see what you think:
2 cups heavy cream 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 6 egg yolks 1/2 cup white sugar 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/8 teaspoon salt 6 egg whites 1/4 cup white sugar confectioners' sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a 10x15 inch jellyroll pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl, whip cream, 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup cocoa, and 1 teaspoon vanilla until thick and stiff. Refrigerate.
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until thick and pale. Blend in 1/3 cup cocoa, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and salt. In large glass bowl, using clean beaters, whip egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually add 1/4 cup sugar, and beat until whites form stiff peaks. Immediately fold the yolk mixture into the whites. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the cake springs back when lightly touched. Dust a clean dishtowel with confectioners' sugar. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and turn the warm cake out onto the towel. Remove and discard parchment paper. Starting at the short edge of the cake, roll the cake up with the towel. Cool for 30 minutes.
Unroll the cake, and spread the filling to within 1 inch of the edge. Roll the cake up with the filling inside. Place seam side down onto a serving plate, and refrigerate until serving. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.
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