Daring Bakers July: Swiss Roll | eat. live. travel. write.

Daring Bakers July: Swiss Roll

I have to admit there was a sharp intake of breath as I checked out the Daring Bakers’ challenge for July.  A “Swiss Swirl Icecream Cake” inspired by this:

(photo courtesy of the Taste of Home website)

I was kind of half expecting there to be a Jello layer in there somewhere! And weirdly, it reminded me of a wig.

The July 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Sunita of Sunita’s world – life and food. Sunita challenged everyone to make an ice-cream filled Swiss roll that’s then used to make a bombe with hot fudge. Her recipe is based on an ice cream cake recipe from Taste of Home.


1. You must make the Swiss rolls, a filling for them, two ice creams and a fudge sauce, from scratch.
2. You must set the dessert in a bowl/pan etc in the order given in the recipe-Swiss roll, first ice-cream, the fudge topping and, finally, the second ice cream.

Ok, you probably know already that I am all about the challenge. The challenge of learning new techniques, that is, and for me, the technique I decided to focus on out of this five-part challenge was the actual swiss roll.

A Swiss Roll? Never made that and always wanted to = perfect.  I searched high and low for a “no fail” sponge cake and finally settled on a recipe from Gourmet (January 2001). My notes in red below.

Ahem, yes, there are no step-by-step pics of this one because it was SO hot when I was baking it and I was in a bit of a fluster wondering whether I was doing it right. Thanks Jen for being there on Twitter for me throughout the process!  And yes, my cake cracked – only a little but enough to mean that I needed a quick fix – ganache to the rescue!

I found this easy glaze at the Food and Wine website.

This was delicious but I had to coat the roll three times (each time letting the glaze harden slightly in the fridge) before I got a shiny solid surface all over the cake. This also makes A LOT of glaze. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing.

But then I still thought it looked a little, shall we say, naked so I went ahead and made some candied orange peel that I thought I would decorate it with in some way. The recipe is from Bon Appétit (December 2008).

I got into a HUGE mess making this (again, no pics!) – how are you supposed to drain the peel from the boiling sugar syrup without it all hardening on the spoon or the strainer.  In any case, I ended up with some lovely long strips of candied peel and also some big lumps of it. I decided to grind the big lumps up in the spice/ coffee grinder and sprinkle it on top of the roll for some added colour.

Finally, I was satisfied. I might not have made the 5 part proper challenge recipe but I had my own multi-part challenge of my own. I learned three techniques that I have never tried before (the cake, the peel and the glaze to coat a cake) so I would say it was a successful personal challenge!  Very happy with the result – tasted SO good – as were our friends who got to taste the fruits of my labour on the weekend!

(yes, it’s nearly the same picture as the one above. I was playing with light and dark backgrounds!)

74 Responses to Daring Bakers July: Swiss Roll

  1. Sharlene (Wheels and Lollipops) July 27, 2010 at 05:18 #

    Amazing Mardi !!!! Definitely a time consuming challenge but the finished product looks delicious !

  2. Jenn July 27, 2010 at 05:26 #

    Gorgeous gorgeous job!!! Simply beautiful Swiss rolls…. I should learn how to make these sometime 🙂

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:19 #

      They’re not so hard but it’s all in the timing (of rolling the cake so it doesn’t crack)

  3. Silke July 27, 2010 at 05:44 #

    Your swiss rolls look stunning.
    Especially the last pic is mouth watering!

  4. Juls @ Juls' Kitchen July 27, 2010 at 06:23 #

    MMMH! Marmelade, great idea! Love it!

  5. deeba July 27, 2010 at 06:27 #

    Well done Mardi. Great take on the challenge. For a minute I thought the dome fm Taste of Home was yours… Love your scribblings and commentary through the post…fun and a beautifully set platter. Love the pairings…

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:18 #

      Deeb a- as IF that one would be mine!!! No way would I ever have been able to make that. I know my limits!

  6. branny July 27, 2010 at 07:35 #

    Your commentary made me LOL. Great challenge.

  7. Belinda @zomppa July 27, 2010 at 07:54 #

    I adore swiss rolls and love your orange twist!!

  8. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction July 27, 2010 at 08:09 #

    LOVE your swiss roll… It looks great. I can imagine how great the candied orange peel was. I’ve always wanted to try that (or lemon, perhaps), but never have. It’s a beautiful pairing!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:18 #

      Oooh yes, lemon would be good too – must try that once I figure out how not to make a huge mess in the kitchen!

  9. Daydreamer Desserts July 27, 2010 at 08:31 #

    Your swiss roll turned out just beautifully, love the candied orange peal! Great job!

  10. Heather July 27, 2010 at 09:02 #

    Nice Yule Log!! 🙂 Delish! We’ve already finished the one you made for us – soo good!

  11. Evan @swEEts July 27, 2010 at 09:11 #

    Your swiss roll makes mine look like an ugly step child! Your flavors sound fabulous and the roll is beautiful! well done 🙂

  12. Rochelle (Acquired Taste) July 27, 2010 at 09:17 #

    I’m envious of those Swiss rolls! They are absolutely gorgeous!!!

  13. Mr. Neil July 27, 2010 at 09:33 #

    Yes, this was yummy — though certainly seemed to be too much work.

    As a side note, “we” [ahem] used Filfar as a sub for Grand Marnier. (Translation: Mr. Neil supplied bottle from drinks cabinet, and replaced after Mardi had finished. No other credit can be taken in the creation of this dessert.)

  14. penny aka jeroxie July 27, 2010 at 09:47 #

    Well done mardi! Mine brokeeeee when I tried making it.. Next time.

  15. Jason Phelps July 27, 2010 at 09:57 #

    Wow, quite a bit of work. Seems worth it though…


    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:16 #

      I might make this again for a special occasion but yes, a lot of work for not a whole lot of cake!

  16. Asha@FSK July 27, 2010 at 10:05 #

    LOL reminded you of a wig?! I must admit, once that was out there, I felt inclined to agree too.. great take on the challenge!

  17. Evelyne@CheapEthnicEatz July 27, 2010 at 10:33 #

    just a fabulous job. Your version looks so elegant. A lot of work.

  18. Jenni July 27, 2010 at 10:39 #

    Great job! Looks beautiful! Love the candied orange peel on top!

  19. Swee San July 27, 2010 at 11:38 #

    It looks very pretty Mardi. The cake was thin and you managed to get alot of “rolls” as well! GOod job 🙂

  20. Kim July 27, 2010 at 12:01 #

    Great job on the swiss roll! It almost looks like it is glowing with the way you photographed it with the grated candied orange peel on top. Looks lovely! Nice job on your challenge.

  21. Barbara Bakes July 27, 2010 at 13:07 #

    Great idea to add the marmalade to the roll. I love chocolate and orange together. It looks delicious.

  22. Sefie July 27, 2010 at 14:22 #

    That looks amazing! I must try making a swiss roll sometime – the icecream bombe part looks a bit… too much, if you know what I mean. I am confused about the swiss roll recipe to melt the chocolate WITH the 3 tbsp water, though – isn’t that exactly what you try to avoid when you’re using a double-boiler? If any water drops into chocolate while it’s melting, it’ll seize! So you made the right decision to leave it out.

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:12 #

      I was confused too and should have just followed my instincts which told me NOT to put the water in. Then I wouldn’t have had to resort to using a chocolate Inukshuk because I already used all my real chocolate!

  23. Sarah, Maison Cupcake July 27, 2010 at 16:25 #

    That looks very elegant! I wish I’d had room in my freezer to make mine.

  24. Ruth H. July 27, 2010 at 18:30 #

    I have never been brave enough to even think about candying citrus peel…! Well done! While there is no ice cream in your challenge, you certainly did challenge yourself, and I think that is the whole point of the Daring Kitchen. Congratulations on a job VERY well done!

  25. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella July 27, 2010 at 19:25 #

    Absolutely tunning job Mardi! I love the shot of the cake from the outside with all of those beautiful swirls! 😀

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:10 #

      I was pretty happy with mine but I think you are referring to the one I *didn’t* make 😉

  26. Cristina, from Buenos Aires to Paris July 28, 2010 at 06:23 #

    VERY well done !! Congratulations !!!!!

  27. sheba July 28, 2010 at 07:31 #

    Love the candied orange…urs looks so beautiful..

  28. Grace July 28, 2010 at 07:32 #

    Wow, this looks amazing Mardi! Swiss Rolls scare me to death, I have yet to try one but something tells me mine will never turn out as good as yours has. I am a huge chocolate lover and this recipe is right up my alley. Thanks for sharing.

  29. viviane bauquet farre / food and style July 28, 2010 at 10:16 #

    Oh Mardi! I laughed so hard at your opening lines! You are very funny my dear… And I dare say your Swiss Roll looks FANTASTIC. I bet it was super-delicious to boot. & I vote for the light background photo!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:08 #

      Well wouldn’t you have thought the same thing??? 😉 And yes, I loved the lighter background too!

  30. Rosa July 28, 2010 at 11:44 #

    A perfect looking cake! Very well done!



  31. Dawn July 28, 2010 at 12:21 #

    Mardi – this is beautiful! It’s on my list of things I want to make but it looks so time consuming! Excellent work!

  32. Maria Beatrix July 28, 2010 at 14:39 #

    Really loved your Swiss roll. It seems delicious.
    Your idea of grinding the big lumps of candied peel and use it as a decoration was great.
    Btw, you wrote the swiss roll picture at Taste of Home website reminded you a wig. For me it looks like a turtle! LOL

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 29, 2010 at 10:07 #

      Ah yes I see a turtle in there now too! Yes, when life hands you ugly lumps of candied peel, you make candied peel “dust” for sprinkling!

  33. Baking Serendipity July 28, 2010 at 15:49 #

    It does look a little like a wig…too funny 🙂 I love the orange you added to your take on the recipe. Looks delicious!

  34. Aparna July 29, 2010 at 05:11 #

    I love the orange and chocolate combination, especially with the marmalade.
    Had to make mine vanilla and chocolate (not that that wasn’t good) because my daughter wanted it that way. 🙂

  35. Cat July 29, 2010 at 16:07 #

    oh that taste of home cake is something else, isn’t it? are those slices of hostess ding-dongs covering it? and wig-like? um, yes.
    yours, now, on the other hand, yours looks lovely and delicious and like something i need to remember to come back to your archives to find come december 20th. with a few sugared cranberries, this should be on my holiday dinner table.

  36. Laura July 29, 2010 at 19:32 #

    First of all: too funny about the dessert looking like a wig. Second of all: I made a flourless chocolate roll, too! Not the same recipe as yours (although I have also made the leontine roll before and it really is fab).
    Nice job with the swiss roll. I also was too hot and rushed to bother with step by step pics. But your final result speaks for itself.

  37. Conor @ HoldtheBeef July 30, 2010 at 09:11 #

    This whole situation is just too funny. A wigish swiss roll mound. It is BEGGING for jello. And some of those paper things you stick on racks of lamb (not sure where they’d go but they somehow seem to fit with the theme).

    Your roll looks lovely. Not at all wigish.

  38. Ciaochowlinda July 30, 2010 at 09:40 #

    That candied orange peel adds a really nice decorative touch and delicious flavor too.

  39. Bubble and Sweet August 1, 2010 at 02:40 #

    Lovely work, it was so many steps and so much time for this challenge. By the way I like the picture at the bottom a little better.

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite August 3, 2010 at 23:25 #

      Yes, funny, I thought I was making the easier of the options but it turned out to be just as much work!

  40. Shirley August 2, 2010 at 00:07 #

    I love that shot with the slice taken out of it! What a job, congrats!

  41. Joanna August 2, 2010 at 21:55 #

    Grand Marnier whipped cream!!! That sounds fantastic! I’d ask for a slice, but it was probably all gobbled up within the first 10minutes of presentation. Congrats on a great DB challenge 🙂

  42. Jean August 25, 2011 at 07:03 #

    Wow. Just…Wow. I am so in awe by the time and effort and skill you put into making this cake, when I can’t even make a simple swiss roll without it cracking in 20 places.

    I bow to your prowess!


  1. Tweets that mention Daring Bakers July – Swiss Roll -- Topsy.com - July 27, 2010

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    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by eatlivetravelwrite, Grace Langlois. Grace Langlois said: You'd never know this was @eatlivtravwrite 1st attempt at a Swiss Roll – Delicious! http://su.pr/1Uluso […]

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