Much to my delight the lovely warm sunshine (when I say warm I mean 16 degrees C HA!) has been out consistently for the past few days now (touch wood touch wood touch wood - with every limb because I HAVE to). I cannot express how much I love the sun and how much difference I think it makes with regards to one's mood.Sun = happiness, ergo I must move to a warmer country or I am going to be one miserable munchkin by the time winter rolls back round. Gaaah. Never mind I should be quiet and make the most of it while it graces dreary England with its presence! That (make the most of it I mean!) is exactly what I did yesterday when I made this very summery almond roulade with lemon curd and fresh strawberries, took it off half completed to the bus station to meet Hannah and then on to the park for a well deserved picnic after the last few weeks of solid hard work!
In our picnic hamper were two cans of the delightfully refreshing cloudy lemonade (not as good as blood orange San Pellegrino but mmm thinking about it makes me want to run to the fridge and crack open my last can of cloudy lemonade which I have been saving for later), an onion bagel each - oh my goodness those things get tastier with age - cream cheese and a little jar of strawberries. I LOVE how much fruit this season brings to the markets in town. The copious amounts of fresh produce available (at a much lower price) is definitely one of my favourite things about summer.
|As is sitting on the grass and not getting a damp bum!!|
I was sat at my desk yesterday at about 10.30 am thinking about surprising Hannah with a picnic and summery desserts, roulade was what came to mind. I sat and pondered it for a bit but didn't act on it. Two hours later I received a text from Hannah saying she was out of college and getting the next bus which meant she'd be in town by quarter past one. I darted into the kitchen at 12.30, the cake was out of the oven by 12.55. If you take prep into account this is one speedy cake to bake! Ideal for spontaneous picnics when the sun comes out.
If you want to go on your picnic pronto and don't have time to wait for the cake to cool completely you can roll it up in baking paper and pop it in the freezer for 15 minutes to kick start the cooling then take it to your destination as it is. Remember to pack the lemon curd and sliced strawberries to complete the roulade when you are sat in the sunshine!
3 medium eggs
20 g soft light brown sugar (+ 2 tbsp)
65 g granulated white sugar
20 g ground almonds
65 g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp almond essence
130 g lemon curd (1/3 of a jar)
150 g of strawberries, sliced
1. Pre heat the oven to 170 degrees C and grease and line a 9" x 13" Swiss Roll tin (or a regular shallow baking tray - that's what I used, mine even had ridges in the bottom that didn't effect my cake one bit).
2. Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl and add the sugar. Whisk with an electric hand whisk for 3 - 4 minutes until the mixture has thickened and become very smooth and lighter in colour.
3. Add the almond essence, ground almonds, flour and baking powder and whisk again until well combined.
4. Transfer the mixture into you pre greased and lined tin and bake for 12 - 15 minutes, until a cocktail stick comes out clean and the cake is springy.
5. Before the cake it due to come out take another sheet of baking paper, a little larger than the cake, and sprinkle it with 2 tbsp granulated sugar (or caster sugar if you prefer less of a crunch).
6. Once baked, tip the cake top side up onto the sprinkled sugar and roll up the roulade tightly with the sugar sprinkled baking paper inside. Leave like this to cool completely.
7. Once completely cooled unroll the roulade carefully and slather generous amounts of lemon curd. Lay the sliced strawberries on top of the lemon curd and roll the roulade back up.
8. Serve, share, eat and ENJOY :) (preferably in the sunshine!)