A light, sweet, and slightly tart jelly roll cake perfect for summer.
Years ago one of us purchased a beautiful jelly roll pan that we found on sale. It’s a beauty of a pan. Sturdy, perfectly sized, and you can see it here in case you’re inspired to purchase the same one, or something similar like this one. The jelly roll pan came with dreams. We imagined homemade bûche de Noël at Christmas and fresh tasting delights like this raspberry lemon jelly roll cake.
Our imagination ran wild, for years. We used our jelly roll pan for all sorts of things; baking spanakopitakia, bougatsa and the pita bread we use for our Greek-style nachos. But a jelly roll cake, that didn’t happen until very recently; it seems we were a little intimidated by these cakes.
Fortunately, after a bit of trial and error, and a lot of baking research, we’ve got this recipe to offer you. A raspberry lemon jelly roll cake that tastes a little like raspberry lemonade – and it’s perfect! Light, delicious and easy to prepare, we think that this is a cake you will be excited to impress your friends and family with. We think that you’re even going to impress yourselves!
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What is the difference between a jelly roll cake, a swiss roll and a roulade?
Honestly, not much as far as we can figure. These terms all refer to a thin sheet cake (often a chiffon cake) that is layered with a filling (jam or whipped cream or frosting for example) and then rolled. What you call this kind of cake depends a bit on what part of the world you are eating it in.
Is it really necessary to follow the times indicated in the recipe related to beating the eggs and the sugar?
You bet! This is a very light sponge that you are making, and although the batter contains a bit of baking powder, a large part of the leavening comes from the fact that you have whipped air into the eggs, sugar and flour. Do not skimp on this step. Set a timer, follow our instructions and watch a YouTube video or two while you wait.
How can I keep my raspberry lemon jelly roll cake from cracking as I roll it?
An easy way is to roll your still warm cake in a kitchen towel and to allow it to cool this way. In so doing your cake will take on the rolled shape. Then, when the cake has cooled, unroll it, add your filling, and roll it back up!
Are jelly roll cakes easy to cut?
They are easier to cut into serving size pieces when they are slightly chilled, so keeping your cake in the fridge may be helpful. At the same time they are more tasty at room temperature. What to do? We have found that an electric knife (you know, the kind you may have bought to carve a ham) works beautifully with room temperature cake. If you don’t have an electric knife, a serrated bread knife would do as well.
Looking for more fresh summer desserts? How about these:
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Things you might need:
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Raspberry lemon jelly roll cake
- Stand mixer with whisk attachment
- Small grater or lemon zester
- 18 x 13 inch jelly roll pan (with a rim that is at least 1 inch high)
- Clean kitchen towel, larger than your jelly roll pan
- Electric knife, optional
For the cake
- 5 eggs large, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar
- 1 tbsp grated lemon zest
- 3/4 cup (110 grams) all purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
For the syrup
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) water
- 1 tbsp granulated white sugar
- 4 tbsp (60 mL) fresh lemon juice
For the filling
- 250 grams marscapone cheese 8.8 ounces
- 1/4 cup fresh raspberries, washed and dried
- 1/3 cup raspberry jam, low-sugar or no-sugar
- icing sugar, to dust the top of the cake
- additional raspberries, optional
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Line your jelly roll pan with parchment paper; try to cover the entire surface with parchment paper. Do not grease pan or parchment paper. Set aside.
- Add your eggs to the bowl of your stand mixer and using the whisk attachement, whisk the eggs at high speed for 1 minute.
- With the mixer speed set to medium, slowly start to pour in the sugar. Next add the lemon zest.
- Whisk at high speed for 8 minutes. The time is important as you want your ingredients to be fluffy and almost tripled in volume.
- In a bowl mix together the flour, salt and baking powder.
- Sift the flour into your beaten egg and sugar mixture in three portions (that is, a third at a time). After each addition, use a rubber spatula to fold in the flour.
- Use your rubber spatula to fold in the flour until you do not see any streaks of flour left; this can be tricky and may take a while. Move your spatula in many different directions to ensure that you are covering all of the areas.
- Once all of the flour has been incorporated, transfer your batter to the parchment lined baking sheet. Use an off-set spatula to spread it evenly around and ensure that your entire jelly roll pan is covered with batter.
- Bake in the middle rack of your oven for 10-13 minutes until golden brown on top.
- Once your cake is baked, remove it from the oven and immediately use a knife to separate the cake from the edges of the pan.
- Lay your clean kitchen towel on your table or countertop. Flip your cake pan over onto the towel and lift away your pan carefully.
- Carefully peel back the parchment paper and discard.
- Using your kitchen towel, wrap your cake into a roll. Set aside to cool completely. This will take between 30 - 60 minutes. While your cake is cooling, prepare the filling and the syrup.
For the syrup
- Combine the water, sugar and lemon juice into a small pot. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
For the filling
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat the marscapone cheese with the paddle attachment for about 1 minute, until light and fluffy. Fold in the raspberries either using the paddle attachment of the mixer, or a rubber spatula. Set the raspberry jam aside, separately.
To assemble the jelly roll cake
- Once your cake is cooled, carefully unroll it. You can leave it on the kitchen towel.
- Brush or pour the syrup over the entire surface of the cake.
- Dollop the marscapone and raspberry mixture across the surface of the cake and use an off-set spatula to spread it evenly across the entire surface.
- Next dollop the raspberry jam on top of the marscapone mixture and spread that evenly across the cake as well.
- Using your towel as a support, begin to roll your cake carefully.
- Carefully transfer your jelly roll cake onto a serving platter with the "seam" of your cake on the bottom.
- If desired, cut off the ends of the jelly roll cake in order to end up with 2 clean sides.
- Dust with icing sugar and place some fresh raspberries on your cake platter if desired.