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Saturday, August 10, 2013

banana in a blanket.

I don't know what is it with me and swiss rolls- I just can't get perfectly cylindrically-shaped ones; every time I make one it turns out looking like a flatten misshaped bolster. I didn't quite feel like being all c'est la vie today so I tried to pretty the swiss roll up with a little whipped cream and sprinkle magic. It worked... maybe. I posted a filtered picture of it on instagram, but I don't think even the filter can disguise its ugliness. Ugh.

But anyway, I'm glad to report that it tastes great! Yeah yeah cue the ugly is beautiful whatnot. The filling is a bit too fluid which made certain parts of the cake soggy (but in a good way). I think I added too much mashed banana because I actually divided the filling quantity and ended up having not to use a whole banana but I figured ah heck, let's just throw it  in and so...

It's precisely because the filling was too fluid when I made it that actually caused the swiss roll to turn out looking like the flat log it is. If you follow the recipe properly (unlike me) you shouldn't have a problem with overly oozy filling. I also recommend that you chill the filling before spreading it on the cake if it's too soft upon just making it. It'll make rolling a whole lot easier, trust me!

Banana in a Blanket
adapted from Baked Explorations

For the cake:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt
5 large eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp icing sugar, divided (or you could use cocoa powder as well)

For the filling:
4 1/2 ounces dark chocolate, melted and cooled
4 medium-sized ripe bananas, peeled and divided
1 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted and cooled

Bake the cake: Preheat oven to 325F. Line a 10 x 15 inch pan.

Sift the flour, cocoa powder and salt thrice.

Whisk the egg yolks and vanilla until thick and pale yellow.

Whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks just begin to form. Slowly beat in the sugar while still whisking, until the whites are glossy and stiff.

Fold a third of the beaten egg whites into the yolk mixture. Fold half of the sifted flour mixture into the egg mixture, then gently fold in half of the remaining egg whites. Fold in the remaining flour mixture followed by the remaining egg whites.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Transfer the pan to a cooling rack, cover the cake with a few damp paper towels and cool for 10 minutes. Remove paper towels and sift a tablespoon of icing sugar over the cake then invert the cake onto a surface with a towel. Remove the parchment paper and sift the remaining tablespoon of icing sugar over the surface of the cake. Starting from the short end of the cake, roll the cake up and let the cake cool completely in its toweled rolled state.

Make the filling: Wrap 2 bananas in aluminum foil and place in the freezer while you prepare the whipped cream. Slice remaining bananas into a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Remove bowl from microwave and mash bananas completely. Set aside to cool.

Whisk the cream vigorously for 1 minute. Sprinkle the sugar over the cream and continue beating until soft peaks form. Fold half of the whipped cream into the melted chocolate until almost combined. Add the remaining cream and fold until uniform in colour. Stir in the mashed bananas.

Assemble the cake: Unroll the cake, spread filling in an even layer over the cake. Sprinkle toasted walnuts over filling. Remove bananas from the freezer and place them end to end at one short end of the cake, cutting to fit if they are too long. Roll the cake up from the banana end. Refrigerate cake for at least an hour before serving.

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