As much as I love quick baking cakes, when I take the time to bake yeast dough cakes, I have to admit there’s just no comparison – the amazing smell that fills the kitchen, the tasty rich fresh soft dough, combined with the filling and the crust – all come together to create the most “comfort food” experience that no quick muffin can give, with all due respect…I am aware of the fact that quite a few people, even experienced bakers, are not too comfortable when it comes to yeast dough cakes. No one can deny that the process indeed takes longer than with most cakes, but it is mainly because of the waiting time for the dough to rise, not because there is so much more work involved. So find a day when you’re around the house, and give this a try. Be patient with the process, let the yeast do its work and you shall be rewarded! The result is so good, that I’m quite sure that once you will make these cakes, you will want to make them again.
An extra bonus is that, unlike in commercially made cakes, here the dough is free of any kinds of additives or preservatives. Another plus is that you can fill the cakes with any filling of your choice, and you are able to control the level sweetness of the filling according to your taste.
The amount may seem large, but these cakes tend to disappear very quickly… They also freeze well, so it makes sense to make more than one of these wonderful roulades.
Makes: 3 roulades 11.5″ x 2.5″ (29cm x 6.3cm)
Prep time for the dough: 15 minutes
Proofing time for the dough: 2-3 hours
Prep time for the roulades: 30 minutes
Proofing time for the roulades: 1-1½ hours
Baking time: 30 minutes
For the dough:
1 ½ cups milk, warm
1 package (1/4 oz, 7 grams) dried yeast
2 Tbs sugar
3 + 1 cups flour
1 stick (115 grams) butter, soft
1/3 cup sour cream
1 XL egg
1 Tbs vanilla
½ cup sugar
2 Tbs oil
For the filling:
Filling 1+2 – jam, sugar, cinnamon or cocoa, raisins
Filling 3 – soft butter, sugar, cinnamon and chopped walnuts
For the egg wash:
1 Tbs milk
1 tsp sugar
½ tsp vanilla
Pearl sugar for sprinkling on (optional)
1. In a small pot, mix the warm milk with the yeast and 2 Tbs sugar. Let sit at room temperature until the yeast starts to foam, about 5 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, place in a mixer bowl 3 cups of the flour, the butter, sour cream, egg, vanilla and sugar. Add the yeast mixture and start mixing with the kneading hook on slow speed, until soft dough is formed.
Scrape the sides and add the additional 1 cup of flour. Knead again on slow speed until the flour is absorbed in the dough, scarping the sides again if necessary. Increase the mixer speed to medium and knead for about 5-7 minutes, until the dough is elastic and smooth.
3. Oil a large bowl with the oil. Place the dough in the bowl and roll it in, so it will be coated with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for about 2-3 hours, until the dough doubles in size.
4. Punch down the dough and knead a bit by hand. Cut into 3 equal portions and let rest for a few minutes, while you prepare the fillings.
5. On a lightly floured work surface, roll one piece of the dough to a large rectangle. Spread jam all over, avoiding the edges. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon or cocoa and scatter golden raisins, for options 1 and 2. Or use option 3 – spread soft butter over the dough and sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon and chopped walnuts.
6. Fold a small portion of both sides of the shorter part of the dough, towards the center (to help keep the filling in). Now roll the dough to form a long roulade. Pinch the edges together, as shown in the photo, to make sure the roulade is well sealed. Place in a lightly oiled pan, pinched side down.
7. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place for about 1½ hours, until the roulades double in size.
8. Preheat the oven to 350F (175C). Mix the egg wash ingredients in a small bowl and brush the roulades with it. Sprinkle the pearl sugar over.
9. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the roulades are nicely browned. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
Now look at these beauties and let me know if you still think it was not worth all the work… :-)