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Making a roll cake.

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hi folks,

I am going to attempt to make an ice cream roll cake for a co-worker/friend of mine. She really likes the ice cream roll cake that Baskin Robbins offers. I like their products, but I thought it would be nice if I could make it myself. Plus, I just like the idea of making a cake. On the surface, it seems like a fairly simple idea. It has ice cream rolled in chocolate devil's food cake and then there is fudge on the outside of the cake.

Here are my questions:

1) I think I need to make the cake in a jelly roll pan. Is that right?

2) When I'm ready to roll the cake and ice cream together, what do I do to make sure the cake will stay intact as I'm rolling it? I think I can keep the cake on parchment paper and then keep the cake wrapped up in the paper while it freezes in the freezer but I'm not sure about that.

3) The last question is about the fudge on the outside. Is that something that is poured over the cake once it has been rolled, or do I make a sheet of fudge and roll it with the rest of the cake? If I make a "fudge sheet", do I make it in a jelly roll pan with the cake, or do I make them separately and then assemble all the pieces and roll when ready?

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Any help will be greatly appreciated!

~W2L

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post #2 of 24
Yes, a jelly roll pan would be helpful.
After baking the cake, invert onto a clean towel that's dusted with powdered sugar.
Using the towel to help start, roll the cake and towel together.
Set aside to cool.
Once cooled, carefully unroll the cake.
Spread your ice cream, then reroll, using the towel to help start, but do not roll the towel up inside the cake (I know, duh).
You can use parchment, but I'd use plastic wrap and foil.
Place in freezer until set.
The topping is probably a ganache, that would be poured onto the cake.
I've only made one cake roll in my life, a pumpkin roll (which reminds me, I should make some for Christmas), and never an ice cream cake roll, so others may have better advice, or be able to add something I've missed.

Let me know when it's done and I'll give you tips on how to ship it.........as well as my address.
:D
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post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
Awesome response, JJ! Just as a reminder, this will be my first attempt to make one of these so if you really want it shipped to you so you can eat it, then you're dancing with the devil my friend. You've been warned!

I like your idea using plastic wrap or aluminum foil instead of parchment paper to aid in the rolling process. Why do you prefer these instead?

As I took a closer look at the cake, it looks like the fudge topping is rolled with the rest of the cake (as opposed to being poured on). I'm still not sure, though. This is why I'm turning to the experts here. You can see the cake at the Baskin Robbins website under their roll cakes. It's the one on the left. I tried posting the link to the page with the picture but I can't post links here yet.

I'm also concerned with the timing of my assembly. Once I have the ice cream softened and ready to be spread, I will use an offset spatula and apply the ice cream. Because this is an ice cream cake, I can't have my cake too warm because it will melt my ice cream (obviously). However, as the cake cools, I worry that it will become too rigid and break during the rolling process. Do you (or anyone else reading this) have any ideas on when the best time to do the rolling part of the process?

Thank you for your time and advice, JJ. I appreciate it very much. :)
post #4 of 24
The plastic and foil was for storage, not for rolling.
Just added protection from the freezer, better than parchment.
I'd use a towel for rolling.
You should roll it and set aside to cool.
Then, when your ice cream is softened, unroll the cake and spread.
Rolling the cake while warm as well as carefully unrolling will give you the cake you want.
It may crack a little, depending on the sponginess of the cake, but that's where the topping comes in.
It hides a multitude of sins.
Once the ice cream is spread, reroll.
Voila.
(I hope I was clear...you roll while warm, rolling the towel in with the cake, cool, unroll, spread, reroll without the towel, frost.)

*Looked at the website.
The pic is kind of small, but it looks like it's merely frosted.
If you look at the description of the white one next to it, it says icing.
Myself, I'd still go with ganache, but the icing looks good too.
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post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
Jim,

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my posts and offering your tips. These are great and I hope I can pull this one off. I never thought to pre-roll the cake while warm and then filling with ice cram later. I will give it a go and I will let you know how things turned out. Thanks again for the friendly advice. Have a nice day and I'll see you here again.

~W2L :)
post #6 of 24
You can bake the cake in any pan with relatively low sides. What's important is that the pan be the right dimensions, so your cake is the correct thickness to roll -- about 1/2" to 3/4". You can use a regular, glass baking pan if you like.

Line the pan with a sheet of parchment, that's the exact width of the pan, but an inch or so, too long. Fold the extra paper so that it stands up at the end of the pan, it will acts as a "tab" when the cake is ready to roll.

Grease the bottom of the pan before lining the pan with parchment paper; then grease the paper as well -- this will make sure the paper doesn't stick to the pan, and the cake to the paper during the rolling process.

Thin cakes bake very quickly. Stay on top of your times.

Jelly roll pans are helpful, because their low sides make it easy to manipulate the cake during the baking process, as well as acting as a guide to avoid baking the cake too high.

Jelly roll cakes are typically (but not always) rolled in the pan. That's why the pans are called "jelly rolls." It's very easy to break a cake that thin when moved, so safer to stay in the pan.

Wait until the cake is fully cooled before schmearing and rolling it.

Before schmearing, lift the tab and try and free the first inch or two of cake from the paper -- so that you've got a good start when you roll. Once started, the cake will come off the paper very easily.

You can use any frosting you like that feezes well. You don't have to use a "poured fondant." A simple ganache will work just fine -- better in fact.

Good luck,
BDL
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post #7 of 24
:talk:I roll mine on a piece of canvas. I moisten the cake a little so it won't crack. I wrap it in plastic real tight then freeze it. DONT USE FOIL it effects taste of filling after a short time ,especially if it is acid. You can use any type frosting or iceing like a yule log.

I also have founfd if you let Ice cream semi soften and put in a loaf pan lined with plastic wrap and frozen you can unmold it and cut in rectangles or squares and place on cake rather then smear it, less chance of breaking and more even dispersion..:talk:
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post #8 of 24
I agree with Ed, don't use foil against the cake.
My suggestion was for wrapping around a cake already wrapped in plastic, avoiding the problem Ed described.
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post #9 of 24

Ice cream roll

I had to smile as you seem to be under the impression that the whole thing is easy...
you have to be careful that you don't over bake your roll/cake or you will end up with cracks, big cracks, do a dummy run first.... qahtan
post #10 of 24
Awsome thread! Guys please provide me a recipe for this roll cake. I would really love to try it out with some chocolate icecream
post #11 of 24
Thread Starter 
First of all, thank you to everyone who has read this and shared their advice. This is exactly what I needed!

BDL, you mentioned making sure I have the right pan size before baking the cake. Do you have a pan size recommendation for a roll cake? I'm trying to make a roll cake to serve 15-20 people, depending on how many people are in the office that day.

Ed, could you explain the best way to moisten the cake before rolling? Do I just get a spray bottle and mist the cake just before rolling? Also, would having a second pan of water in the oven with the cake help with the moisture content of the cake? Lastly, won't freezing the ice cream in a loaf pan and cutting into rectangles make it tougher to roll the cake? I thought the ice cream needed to be somewhat softened for rolling purposes.

Qahtan, I'm glad I could make you smile. ;) Now you can see why I put that qualifying statement that on the surface it appears easy to do. As this discussion has evolved I see that this is not going to be easy. I knew it wasn't going to be as easy as it looks but there are a lot of subtle things that I would have never thought of if someone here had not pointed them out to me. I also like to make a dummy item the first time try something new. That way if it doesn't work then no biggie. If it does work then I have a real tasty treat to snack on

Shirley, I have no recipe for this. I am trying to figure this out from scratch, so to speak. The cake I am trying to model mine from is made with devil's food cake, ice cream, and fudge. However, I think instead of a fudge coating on the outside, I am going to coat it with a ganache based on the advice some of the others here have given me. Once I have everything in place I will be happy to share what I do with you. Let me just make sure I don't have a culinary catastrophe first before I give you any advice on this one.

My comments in this post were addressed to the members who provided comments and advice already. However, as I have said before, anyone of any experience level that has advice or comments to share please fell free to do so. All advice and answers to any of my questions will always be appreciated.

Thanks everybody!

~W2L :)
post #12 of 24
Buy putting the ice cream on in squares(naturally semi soft )you do not have to spread it therefore not breaking the cake. I spray with a little sugar water(simple syrup) mixed with liquor, flavor dependant on what I am making. Also figure 1 inch per person. Also try not to frost with anything that has to be warm if possible.
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post #13 of 24
At least two medium sized jellyrolls (10x15 IIRC) or maybe a large (12 x 17) and a medium. You want at least one inch per person.

What Ed said about moistening the cake slightly before rolling ... although since you're in an adult setting you might want to use a little hooch in your syrup. I'd probably go with an orange liqueur, a spiced rum (like Captain Morgan), or ordinary cognac to compliment the chocolate.

IMO, ice cream jelly-rolls for 20 is way too ambitious for a first time. Anything for 20 is too ambitious for a first time. But then, I'm timid.

BDL
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post #14 of 24

ice cream roll

I am glad you were not offended at my smiling at you.. it was not intended.

Buuuuuuuuuuuut if I was you I would go with making a Genoese sponge,
bake it until it is just done not a moment longer.

It's a very nice cake/sponge worthy of the time and effort put into the finished product.
cake, cake on the other hand I feel will crack.

http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y58...ebroc019-1.jpg

this is the only picture I have of a jelly roll I have made, it has coffee butter cream inside, but could have just as easily been ice cream,,,, qahtan
post #15 of 24
Never met a Timid Esquire..:lol:
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post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 
Ed, thanks again for your time. I appreciate all the explaining you have done here. I know all of these tips will serve me well.

BDL, thank you for the recommendations. I really like the idea of adding some liqueur. And I agree with you, I think this is a huge project for my first attempt at a roll cake. However, I am not one to back down from a challenge. This may not work out on my first attempt, but I will find a way to make this work eventually. At the very least, I will have a lot of fun trying to make this.

Qahtan, that's a beautiful roll cake. I was thinking about a sponge cake as well instead of the devil's food cake. I'm still not sure, though. I'm trying to make this for my friend who likes one that is made with devil's food cake but it just seems a sponge cake will roll a lot more easily. That's not to say that it will be easy, just easier than it will be if I try to do it with devil's food cake.

Thanks everybody!

~W2L :)
post #17 of 24

chocolate Genoese

you could always make a chocolate genoese........

remember think positive. ;-))))) qahtan

I usually jump in with both feet and hope for the best, q
post #18 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

I have a roll pan now and I'm going to do my dummy trial. I have a couple more questions. First, does it matter which direction the cake is rolled? Do I roll it along the long edge or the short edge? In other words, should it be short and fat or long and skinny once rolled? Secondly, the more I think about it I like the idea of coating it with a ganache. Since this is going to be on an ice cream roll cake, should the ganache be made to be a little thicker with more chocolate than cream? Also, is there anything I can add to it so the ganache will stay all shiny and glossy after it has been in the freezer? Thanks for your help, folks!

~W2L :)
post #19 of 24

long and skinny.

do it long ways, long and skinny, or you will have one big fat roll,... it will not look skinny once you fill it........ qahtan
take a picture.
post #20 of 24

how to roll it.

roll the sponge in a heavily sugared clean tea towel, after removing the paper. you can see the sugar on my coffee roll.
Carefully lift all onto cooling rack and leave to completely cool, gently unroll, remove tea towel, re roll until you want to fill , then continue..... q
post #21 of 24
Dear Wants2Learn,

If you intend to bake some fancy cakes, I would invest in The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Baranbaum. Not only does it have a recipe for a Chocolate Cloud cake roll with detailed instructions on baking and rolling, it has many recipes and descriptions of techniques for other creations within reach of an ambitious home baker. I used this particular recipe to make my first cake roll, which I filled with a Bailey's Irish cream-flavored whipped cream.

And if I were making a chocolate cake roll, I would dust with cocoa or Ghirardelli's ground chocolate rather than confectioner's sugar, which will be very noticeable if you have a heavy hand.

Have fun!
post #22 of 24
How did this turn out?
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post #23 of 24
I suspect this is what we in the UK call a Swiss roll?
post #24 of 24

hey Jim This is more a question you say to put powder sugar on a towel to keep it from sticking but what about putting the power sugar on the cake and then put the towel ove top and turn over. also once i take the paper off the bottom do I put power sugar on that side to keep the towel from sticking as I roll it up. thanks

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