Lemon Roll Cake

pink-flowers

 

And now, here’s the recipe for the cake I wrote about in Willard, an old-fashioned lemon-filled sponge cake, soft as a baby’s hiney, perfect for spring birthdays, and gorgeous as a Mother’s Day Tea Cake.

sweetness!

Mother's Day Tea Cake

And since I made this cake for Easter, I thought I’d show you just how easy it is to put together.  Making this roll is much easier than you might think if you haven’t done it before.

set the temperature

So set your oven for 375° and here we go . . .

butter the pan

Butter a 10″ x 15″ cookie sheet that has a rim (jelly roll pan), then lay down a piece of waxed paper (allowing it to go over edge), smooth it into the corners and into the butter, and then butter the paper too.

flowers

separate the eggs

Put the yolks of three eggs in one bowl and the whites in another.
add sugar

Beat egg yolks a little bit then add a cup of sugar and . . .

thick and lemon colored

Beat them until they’re thick and lemon colored . . .

sift

Sift a cup of flour together with salt and baking powder . . . (don’t worry I’ll give measurements at the end)…

add flour mixture

And stir it in to your batter along with six tablespoons of hot water . . .

beat the egg whites

Beat the egg whites until stiff and glossy.

Happy spring

While you’re doing that take a peek outside . . . oh, my, what a DAY!

look out the window

And LOOK!!!  I begin calling for Joe . . . we have robins by the herds, we have gaggles of cardinals, whole families ~ (not that I will ever take them for granted), but see that bird on the right?  We never see that bird.  ever.  Got out the bird book where we find out it usually likes woods and thickets.  This is our driveway . . . he is a “rose-breasted grosbeak.”

bird

spring birdies in the driveway

We ooh and aaah over him for a few minutes . . . He must have spring fever, coming over for some dessert seeds.

fold in whitesOK, that was nice, but back to “work” ~ folding in the egg whites . . .

add zestAnd then the zest of one lemon . . . Now spread the batter evenly on your well-buttered cookie sheet and put into oven for 12 to 15 minutes.

sugar a dishtowel

While it’s baking, lay out a clean dishtowel and sift over a sprinkling of powdered sugar.

pull cake out of pan

When the cake is done, and wafting fresh cake fragrance to the neighborhood, bring it out of the oven and use the edges of the waxed paper to turn it out onto your powdered-sugar covered cloth . . .

remove waxed paper

Voila!  While still hot, carefully peel off the paper.  Then take a pair of sharp scissors and cut off the crispy edges of the cake all the way around . . .

cut off crisp edges

You can eat those crispy edges immediately, but from experience, if you eat them all now, you’ll have nothing to dip in the lemon filling you’re about to make. Just sayin’ . . .

rolling up the cakeNow, using the dishtowel begin to roll up the cake.  It’s fairly malleable while it’s hot so you can make a nice roll, just pull out the towel as you go . . .

roll it up

Once it’s all rolled, just leave it there and let it cool while you make the filling.  Essentially it’s in training now to be a roll.

make lemon filling

LEMON FILLING:  In the top part of a double boiler, put two whole eggs, a cup of sugar, the grated rind of two lemons . . .

juice of two lemons

The fresh juice of two lemons and two tablespoons of melted butter.

fresh lemon juice

Pour the juice into the double boiler through a fine sieve if your lemons are like mine and filled with seeds.  Stir over simmering water for fifteen minutes until the filling is thick. Cool slightly. (Más MUSICA Girlfriends?)

unroll

Then it’s time to unroll your cake; carefully peel it open until it’s flat ~ it goes very easily . . .

spread filling

Pour over the lemon filling and spread it almost to the edges, but leave it thick in the middle. (Don’t forget to save a little bit of filling to dip your cake clippings in if you have any left.)

too much of a good thing

roll it back up

Roll the cake back up, not TOO tightly, because you want the lemon filling to stay inside.  I roll and lift the cake a bit as I go so as to keep the lemon from squeezing out the sides. Move the cake to an oval serving plate.

forsythia

Sift over a little more powdered sugar ~ the cake is beautiful, but I decide it needs a little Easter decoration . . . so I run outside to pick some of my pretty yellow (non-toxic) forsythia flowers . . . any excuse to go outside is a good thing.

pink flowers

grab some flowersAnd voila!  Like little butterflies.  Your cake would be just as pretty with wild violets, pansies, johnny jump-ups, or roses . . 

sweetness

for Joe

Here’s the recipe Girlfriends!

CAKE:

  • 3 eggs, separated in two lg. bowls
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 6 Tbsp. hot water
  • 1 c. sifted unbleached flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • grated rind of one lemon (zest)
  • sifted powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 375°.  Butter a 10″ x 15″ cookie sheet or jelly roll pan, one with a rim.  Line it with waxed paper leaving some to hang over edges (an inch is fine). Set pan aside.  Separate eggs into two large bowls.  Beat egg yolks, add sugar and beat until thick and lemon-colored.  Stir in hot water and dry ingredients.  Beat egg whites with electric beater until stiff; gently fold into egg batter.  Fold in grated rind.  Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading evenly.  Bake 12-15 min.

Immediately turn finished cake onto clean dishtowel lightly covered with sifted powdered get-attachment.aspxsugar. Carefully peel off waxed paper.  With sharp scissors, cut off the crisp edges of the cake.  Using the cloth, roll up cake pulling out cloth as you go.  Leave it covered and rolled, set it aside to cool while you make the filling.

FILLING

  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • zest and juice of 2 lemons (strained if necessary, no seeds please)

Put all ingredients into top part of double boiler.  Beat well and stir til thick, approx. 15-20 min.  Cool slightly.

FINISH

Unroll the cake, spread on the filling, and roll back up.  Cool completely.  Transfer to serving dish.  Sift over a tiny bit more powdered sugar.  Add flowers if you like, edible and unsprayed, violets, pansies, roses, johnny jump ups. Here’s a list of edible flowers.

with-love

XOXO 

2 Responses to Lemon Roll Cake

  1. Erika Laing says:

    Dear Susan,
    Thank you for helping me make beautifully sweet memories with my kids <3 🙂

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