Great British Bake Off is back! What did everyone think of Episode 1? I must admit that, although I am so glad to see Mel, Sue, Paul & Mary again (those four should totally form a cover band!), I felt that the inaugural episode was a little lacklustre. The theme was cakes and the contestants shared their signature Swiss roll recipes, tackled a classic Mary Berry cherry cake and baked mini versions of British classics.
It may be that I need to spend a little more time with the bakers and get to know them before I become truly invested. Unlike the last series, where there were immediate standouts, this season seems lacking in big personalities, so far at least. Martha, who at 17 is the youngest contestant ever, is my favourite. She seems to have a good baking head on her young shoulders and is just so darned cute. I thought everyone seemed very nice which prompted my husband to say ‘ I wish you were cast. This show needs some good angry energy’. This is a compliment believe it or not.
As I mentioned in my Great British Bake Off confession I have been challenged by Magimix to follow the show and create one recipe from each episode using their multifunction food processor. This week it had to be a Swiss Roll which I must admit I very rarely make. It just seems like a lot of effort for what basically is a rolled-up cake. Am I alone in this?
My signature bake was made without any previous practice – it is a brand new and original recipe so there are a lot of kinks that I need to iron out (I have included notes with suggested improvements)… But enough excuses, I am sure Paul and Mary would not stand for them!
#GBBO Bake Along: Week 1 – Piña Colada Swiss Roll
My inspiration for this recipe came from the (slightly dated) popular cocktail which pairs pineapple with coconut and rum. Retro recipes seem all the rage on GBBO, right? My swiss roll turned out perfect and did not crack at all. But I was very pressed for time and rushed the filling which was too soft and oozed out (cue dramatic music). So all in all I think I would probably get marked down for appearance and lack of a defined ‘roll’ but I would hopefully win points for flavour. Because this is one tasty, fluffy, soft, yummy Swiss Roll. Altogether now ‘♫ If you like piña coladas… and getting caught in the rain… ♫’
For the pineapple curd
Note: this was a little too soft-set. I think next time I would add a teaspoon of cornflour to thicken it up.
1 small pineapple, peeled and cubed
Juice of 2 limes
150g | 5.3oz sugar
60g | 2 oz | 4 tbsp unsalted butter, cubed
3 large eggs
1. Put the pineapple pieces into the bowl of your food processor and process for a couple of minutes until completely liquidised. You can strain over a bowl to make sure the mixture is smooth but that is not essential.
2. Put 240ml (1 cup) of the pineapple, the lime juice, sugar, salt and butter into a small saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until the butter melts and sugar is dissolved. Take off the heat.
3. Crack the eggs in a bowl and lightly whisk together.
4. Very gradually pour the pineapple mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly so that they don’t curdle.
5. Pour back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the curd thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon – this can take up to 10 minutes.
6. Cool completely before using – it is best if you make it a day in advance and store in the fridge before filling the Swiss roll.
For the simple syrup
4 tbsp sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1-2 tbsp Malibu or light rum
1. Put all the ingredients in a small saucepan and heat until sugar melts and mixture is slightly reduced. Set aside to cool.
For the coconut whipped cream
This is completely delicious but make sure you use full fat coconut cream which doesn’t contain guar gum – you want the type that separates in the can not the emulsified homogenous stuff. Pour out any liquid and only use the solid coconut in the whipped cream. For best results put the coconut and mixing bowl in the fridge a few hours before you need to use. I didn’t and my cream was slightly runny which made the sponge difficult to roll. You can always leave out the coconut and just use double cream.
150g | 3.5oz icing (powdered) sugar
100g | 3 1/2 oz full fat coconut cream (cold)
200g | 7oz double cream (cold)
1/2 tbsp Malibu or light rum
1. If you are using the Magimix then put all the ingredients in the large bowl, remove the graduated pusher, and whisk (using whisk attachment) for 4-5 minutes. Don’t over process.
If you are using a stand mixer whisk until you get firm peaks. Keep in the fridge until you use.
For the Swiss Roll
3 large eggs
Zest of 1 lemon
100g | 3 1/2oz | 3/4 cup plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 drops coconut extract (optional – don’t bother with coconut essence)
Icing (powdered) sugar to dust and roll
Toasted coconut chips (about 100g | 3 1/2 oz or more to coat as needed)
1. Preheat the oven to 220C (430F). Grease a 10x15inch swiss roll tin, line with baking parchment and grease and dust the parchment with flour. Get rid of excess flour.
2. Place a clean kitchen towel on your countertop and line it with baking paper. Generously dust the paper with icing sugar. Cut a second piece of baking paper (of same size) and set aside.
3. If you are using the Magimix then put the eggs, coconut extract, lemon zest and sugar in the large bowl, remove the graduated pusher, and whisk (using whisk attachment) for 4-5 minutes until light in colour and frothy. You can also do this in a stand mixer or even by hand (if you are strong and fancy a workout).
4. Mix the flour and baking powder together and then sift over the eggs, carefully folding in as you go, until all the flour is incorporated.
5. Pour the batter in the prepared tin and tap the tin on the counter top to release any air bubbles. Spread the batter to the edges of the tin and bake for 10 minutes until golden.
6. Turn the tin over onto a wire rack then transfer the sponge onto the sugared paper. Peel off the baking paper used to line the tin.
7. Score a groove along the short side of the sponge about 1 inch from the edge to make it easier to roll. Cover with baking paper.
8. Fold the sponge over the groove. Grasp the ends of the towel and roll up the sponge, quite tightly, over the top layer of paper. Keep it rolled until cool.
9. Once the sponge is cool, unroll it gently and brush it with the simple syrup. Spread with a thin layer of pineapple curd and then spread with the whipped cream (or you can mix the two together before filling) to the edges. Don’t overfill or it will ooze out.
10. Gently but firmly re-roll the cake, wrap in cling film and chill for an hour (if possible). Cover with a thin layer of lemon curd and then coat the entire roll with toasted coconut chips.
11. Finally ready to serve – phew!
If you are baking along to the Great British Bake Off I would love it if you would link your recipes! I will keep the linky open until the show ends (in October). If you link up please grab the badge and link back so that others can find it. Comments are very welcome and I have created a dedicated Pinterest Board to share the entries on.