Can’t decide if it looks simple to make, or hard to make? It’s not just making a cake out of the box, though, there are multiple steps to get to the final product.
However, my 11-year old made this. With adult supervision, of course. About the only things she would let me help with is to help judge when the egg yolks were mixed enough, if the egg whites had “peaks” yet, and, when was the whipped cream ready? We almost ended up with butter on that one. And, it’s a pretty big sheet pan, so, I didn’t want her taking it out of the oven herself. The flipping out part is not hard, but it is a hot pan, and if you hesitate when flipping, the whole thing could crumble. And that, that would be bad.
Equipment and special tools:
- 10×15 inch jelly roll pan, that has at least a ½ to ¾ inch lip. I have always used a regular baking sheet.
- Parchment paper
- Tea towel (not a terry, looped towel), but a smooth cotton or linen tea towel. The hot cake WILL stick to the looped fibers and your cake will not be quite so pretty. Plus, it’s a shame that the towel may eat more cake than you!
- 2 mixing bowls
- Electric hand mixer
- Stand mixer
- Egg separator
- ** It is not necessary to have 2 different mixers, but it does help, so that the egg yolks and the egg whites can be whipped separately, without having to wash the beaters, clean out the bowl…etc. This is one of the few times where I will pull out both mixers, and use many, many bowls, and not worry about how many dishes there will be to wash. You will however, need to wash the stand mixer bowl and beater to prepare the Chantilly Cream.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Step 1: Prepare the sheet pan. We found that it works best when the pan is greased, then place the parchment paper in there, and grease the top of the parchment paper. A little overkill, I thought, but the chef-of-the-day (my 11-year old), was pleased with the results. We did use butter. Remember, the cake itself has no butter, so…
Step 2: Make the Cake
- 4 large eggs, separated
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3/4 cup cake or all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
In a small mixing bowl, combine the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla with a hand mixer. Beat until light and lemon colored, about 4 minutes. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, and mix just until flour is all mixed in.
In a separate bowl (we used the stand mixer for this), whip the egg whites until peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolks.
Step 3: Bake the Cake
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, gently spread out. Place the sheet pan in the oven, and set the timer for 12 minutes. I do like to turn this cake around half way through baking, so that browns evenly.
As soon as the cake is done, gently flip the cake out onto the sugared towel. Gently peel off the parchment paper and throw away. Start rolling up the cake, firmly and not too tightly. I like to set the rolled up cake (still in the tea towel) on the seam side down, to let it cool. The cake should be allowed to cool for several hours, so it won’t melt the whipped cream.
Next, as SOON as the cake comes out of the oven, flip out out on the powdered sugar tea towel, and gently roll it up. It will be slightly steaming hot, but this is good, because the cake is very flexible. Have the counter top cleared, and the tea towel already sugared up with some powdered sugar.
Prepare the Chantilly Cream –
- 1 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon sugar, regular table sugar or powdered sugar
- ***we used 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar, to which we added one teaspoon of the commercial stabilizing gelatin. (Truth be told, purchased this online by accident, thinking I was buying a stabilizer suitable for canning blueberry pie filling. But, it has definitely come in handy.)
a fancy way of saying Whipped Cream. We did have some commercial gelatin, the kind that bakers use. After much searching, we added one teaspoon of the gelatin to the powdered sugar, then added the sugar mix to the heavy cream. The gelatin helped stabilize the cream, so it doesn’t deflate. The leftover whipped cream actually kept it’s shape in the fridge over the next few days. The gelatin would explain why our (home cooks) desserts never look quite as “set” as a bakery’s does.
Assemble the cake: