The recipes we use at Beatrix are drawn from my pastry chef experience, a crazy amount of cookbooks, and nostalgic favourites. We have a rare ability to meld the traditional pillars of cake baking with our own brand of irreverent innovation.
This week’s recipe is a good example of this amalgamation: cocoa meringue roulade with toffeed fig and St David’s Dairy creme fraîche!
Roulades are the Seventies, speedy and scrumptious all at once! Don’t pass them by, as they are an agile dessert that pair happily with a variety of creams (mascarpone, crème fraiche, smooth ricotta) and fruit (berries, poached pear, passionfruit, lemon curd etc). You could also opt to switch this to a layer cake. I always love eating the offcuts from the morning cake set up at Beatrix… well before you should really be eating these kind of desserts!
INGREDIENTS for the roulade
(makes one, 30cm x 40cm)
180g egg whites (from around 6 eggs)
pinch tartar cream
300g caster sugar
50g Dutch cocoa powder
5g vanilla paste
Pinch of good sea salt
INGREDIENTS for the filling
1/2 teaspoon vanilla paste – or half a vanilla bean scraped out
Zest one lemon
4 large ripe figs, each cut into three slices
FOR THE ROULADE
Preheat oven to 150˚C.
Line a 30cm x 40cm flat tray with canola spray and baking paper.
Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in the stand mixer bowl, and whisk at a medium-high speed. Whisk the whites until they reach a firm peak and look creamy.
Add half a cup of the sugar gradually- around a tablespoon at a time to start with, then two at a time as the mix gets glossy and firm.
Add the vanilla.
Sift the cocoa, salt, and remaining sugar together, turn off the mixer then add all at once to the meringue at a low speed. The cocoa can fly so drape a tea towel over the top!
Scrape the mix out into the prepared tray, in a large rectangular shape, and smooth out with an offset spatula, leaving a small margin as the meringue will puff and spread when baking. Spread it all the way if using a tin with higher sides, or split the mix between two canola sprayed and lined 20cm round cake tins to make a layer cake.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until the top feels crunchy but not hard – like a crunchy pillow!
Cool the meringue completely on the tray.
FOR THE FILLING
Stir the mascarpone, vanilla and lemon zest.
Lay the fig slices on a baking tray and scatter with sugar blowtorch the sugar to caramelise
To fill and assemble, turn the meringue out onto a sheet of Gladwrap dusted with Dutch cocoa. Flip the meringue onto the Gladwrap so the top becomes the outside and the longest side is closest to you.
Spread the mascarpone out starting from the side closest to you and leave an un-creamed 2cm strip at the top.
Tear the toffeed figs and scatter over the cream.
Start the roll by moving along the roulade with your fingers – just tucking the first bit.
Using the Gladwrap, lift and roll the roulade until the seam is on the bottom – roll onto a platter and eat!