Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Chocolate and raspberry roulade

 OK, so did you have a great New Year's Eve? Whatever you were doing? 

After the wet dog walk/recipe fail we headed off to the party last night with the kids and had a fantastic time. We didn't see the kids until just before midnight, and although Pink went into proper overtired meltdown with precisely 30 seconds to go, we were all there, together, for the countdown, the party poppers, the fizz and the kissing. It was lovely.

Despite the hasty exit immediately afterwards as the result of said meltdown, we had a great night and have crawled through today relatively unscathed. It helped that the weather has  finally been glorious, and to top it all, my jaw has miraculously sorted itself out, so I am off the painkillers, and my cobwebs this morning were strictly prosecco-related. My day was improved further by a beautiful cobweb-clearing dog walk, and then watching the DVD of Annie with Pink and the menfolk (Blue was most scathing of the whole thing, although I defy him to say he didn't get a little bit excited about the whole kidnap and rescue bit at the end when. All he could say is "Well, I just don't like musicals." More fool him, I say).

So I promised you chocolate roulade, and chocolate roulade I shall give you.

I intended to make this as our dessert for our New Year's Eve dinner party/gathering, and I'd already made the sponge before our guests had to postpone, so I thought it would probably be a good idea to finish it off and just make sure it all worked... I'll probably be making it again at the weekend when we're hoping our friends will be well enough to have New Year's Eve all over again (although as we explained to the kids at teatime today, the countdown, the party poppers, the fizz and the kissing might happen closer to 9 p.m. than midnight...) 

The best thing about this is that it is relatively easy to make, and not that bad (in a 'grand scheme' of things kind of way) for you, what with a fat free sponge, low fat cream and some fruit thrown in for good measure. The only caveat I must add is in relation to the ganache***, because as I explained last night, although it worked in the end, it was all a bit touch and go. We'll see how I get on writing it down today - I may have to revisit...

Chocolate and raspberry roulade

Serves lots - or a few greedy people. You'll get at least 12 slices - so may be that's a slice each for 12 people, or 3 slices for 4 people - I'm easy...

6 large eggs, separated
165g golden caster sugar
50g sifted cocoa powder, plus extra for dusting and rolling the roulade sponge
284ml pot of 'light' double cream (although you can use full fat if you like!)
400g frozen raspberries, thawed
50-100g icing sugar
1tsp vanilla extract
225g dark chocolate broken into pieces (but see caveat***)

You need a swiss roll tin around 23 cm x 33 cm, greased and lined, and more greaseproof paper for rolling.


  •  Pre-heat the oven to 180C/160Cfan.
  • Whisk the egg yolks with 125g of the caster sugar until thick and pale. Fold in the sifted cocoa powder.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites till they are stiff (I got a stainless steel bwl for my Kenwood for Christmas. So exciting to be able to give it an outing!) and then fold them into the egg yolk mix.
  • Pour this sponge mixture into the lined tin, gently level the top and bake for about 25 mins till the sponge is starting to come away for the paper.
  • Once the sponge is cooked, take it out of the oven. Spread a piece of greaseproof paper out big enough for the sponge to lay on, and sift some cocoa powder over it. Turn the sponge face down onto the cocoa powder and carefully peel away the paper that it was cooked on.  Using the paper that the sponge is now lying on, roll the sponge up from the short end and set aside.  
  • Sieve 250g of the raspberries with the icing sugar, and whip the cream to soft peaks. When the cream is ready, stir through as much of the raspberry coulis as you feel necessary or to your taste. If you don't use all the coulis, you can serve it in a jug to pour over slices of the finished roulade. Slurp.
  • Unroll the sponge carefully, although it doesn't matter if it does crack, and spread with the raspberry cream - again you may not need all of it but it's not going to go to waste served alongside - and then drain the remaining defrosted raspberries (add any juice to any left over coulis)  and spread over the cream. Roll the log up, this time without the paper, and sit on the serving plate. 
  • Make the ganache. Put the chocolate in a bowl and then in a pan, add the vanilla extract and remaining caster sugar (40g) to 300ml of water and bring to the boil. Once boiled, add the water to the chocolate a little at a time, whisking furiously till the chocolate is melted, thick and glossy. 
          ***It was at this point that I poured in all the water, rather than a little at a time. I ended    up with silky, chocolate... water. I ended up adding about another 150g of dark chocolate and a few white chocolate chips that I had knocking around in the cupboard. I whisked and whisked then ended up putting it in the fridge, whisking every 10 mins or so, and eventually it thickened. Phew. If you don't want to take the risk, there are plenty of other ganache recipes out there, people!***

  • Once the ganache is made, however you choose to make it, spread it thickly over the roulade, leaving the ends uncovered, and decorate, Yule Log style, with the prongs of a fork to make "bark". 
I had intended to use up some left over icing and marzipan from the Christmas cake, along with some food colouring and shimmer spray to make some tacky but fun decorations, but frankly the whole ganache episode left me fit only to reach for the gin bottle. And really, when it looks this good, I'm not sure it needed it.

***An Update 03/01/2013 - in my stress with the ganache, I tweeted @womanandhome about this, because I'd followed a recipe in their mag. I have had a tweet back!

" @Recipejunkie27 Hi there, apologies for the mistake - the recipe calls for 125ml of water and 300g of chocolate. Thanks! "

So there - you need 125ml of water and you'll be laughing.***


  1. Clever you!!! I tried to make one of these once and it was a total disaster! yours looks gorgeous!!
    Happy New Year!
    Mary x

  2. Result on getting a reply from them! I still maintain anything with a huge amount of chocolate in it can never be a bad thing - even if you have to pass it off as chocolate gravy!!

    1. chocolate gravy? now you've got me thinking...

  3. Yummy this sounds nice. looks delicious to, thanks for sharing this recipe.


  4. This looks so perfect, rich and delicious!


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