A classic jelly roll cake is the essence of a homespun dessert. The cake is faintly sweet and can be filled in all different ways. Feel free to experiment with different jams like raspberry and apricot or perhaps a jarred citrus curd.
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Softened butter, for greasing
1/4 cup all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
4 large eggs, separated
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup cornstarch
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting
3/4 cup strawberry preserves
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 cup strawberries, finely chopped, plus sliced strawberries, for garnish
1/2 cup cold heavy cream
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tablespoon orange liqueur, such as Cointreau or Grand Mariner (optional)
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
Toasted sliced almonds, for garnish
How to Make It
BAKE THE CAKEPreheat the oven to 350°. Grease a 10-by-15-inch rimmed baking sheet with butter, then line with parchment paper. Grease the paper with more butter and dust with flour, knocking out the excess. In a large bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the egg yolks at medium speed with 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar, the orange zest, extracts and salt until thickened and pale, about 2 minutes.
In a clean bowl, using cleaned beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup of granulated sugar and beat until firm and glossy. Fold the egg whites into the batter until no streaks remain. Sift the 1/4 cup of flour and cornstarch over the batter and fold in until the batter is just combined. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for about 15 minutes, until the cake is lightly browned and springs back when pressed.
Dust the top of the cake liberally with confectioners’ sugar and place a clean kitchen towel on top. Invert the cake with the towel onto a cooling rack and peel off the parchment. Starting with one of the short sides, roll up the cake tightly but gently in the towel and let cool for 30 minutes.
MAKE THE FILLINGMeanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the preserves with the orange juice, then add the chopped strawberries. Carefully unroll the cake and let cool for 5 minutes. Spread the filling evenly over the entire surface of the cake. Starting at the short end, roll up the cake. Using a serrated knife and trim the ends. Using 2 spatulas, transfer the cake to a plate. Refrigerate, loosely covered, for 2 hours.
Just before serving, in a medium bowl, beat the cream with the confectioners’ sugar, orange liqueur, if using, and almond extract until soft peaks form. Spoon the cream over the top of the cake and garnish with the almonds and sliced strawberries.
The finished roll without the whipped cream topping and garnish can be refrigerated overnight.
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