Thursday, October 26, 2017

Strawberry Chiffon Swiss Roll - Asian style. Not too sweet. Light and cottony soft!

After baking for about 7 years, I think that I have learned a lot as I baked.

Ahem... Not bragging but I really think that I can bake a really nice Swiss roll... typically, the Asian ones being iconic soft, light and cottony.

Since I was going to bake this really nice strawberry Swiss roll to bring for my work mates, I thought I might as well take a video of my bake and share this fantastic recipe. And I sincerely hope that you will like this recipe.

strawberry chiffon Swiss roll
Strawberry Chiffon Swiss Roll

Many of my Asian friends who live in Melbourne tell me that they miss eating the Asian type of Swiss rolls especially the ones that are 1) generously filled with fresh fruits, 2) not too sweet, 3) light with the least amount of cream and 4) must be cottony soft. I know because I'm with them too.

The good thing is after baking for so many years, I CAN BAKE a good Swiss roll exactly like this! And it is my pleasure to share my beloved recipe with you...

If you follow my recipe and instructions to the tee, I can assure that YOU CAN BAKE a good Swiss roll too!

Having said that, I can't say that this recipe is 100% flawless because ...

1) the chiffon cake base is soft and tender and might crack a little when you roll the cake with lots of fruits.

2) the skin on the top of the cake might peel off partially when you handle the cake especially when the cake is chilled resulting it to be slightly wet.

So, if you are fussy and want your Swiss roll to look 100% flawless, you can either ...

1) Roll your cake with its skinless side out!

To do so, place the cake with its bottom (the skinless side) facing down and arrange the cream and fruits on the side with the cake skin. Roll your cake accordingly. Doing this will make your Swiss roll look skinless on the outside and you won't peel off any skin when you handle it!

2) Or cover the flaws with icing sugar!

If you are like me who prefer to roll your Swiss roll with its cake skin on the outside and might have accidentally peel off part of its skin, don't cry! LOL! You can cover the minor flaws by dusting icing sugar on it! Plus, the cake is not overly sweet and so it is ok to dust it generously with icing sugar.

Here's my Swiss roll with its cake skin on the outside. Unfortunately, the thoroughly chilled cake can be quite tricky to handle and so some of its skin got stuck on my hand and got peeled... Hmmm... Sian*!!!

*Sian is a Singlish expression to convey boredom or frustration.

Fortunately, some powdery "concealer" has made it look miraculously ok! See...

strawberry chiffon Swiss roll
Look-wise, I would say that the cake is probably 85% perfect. You think?
Taste-wise, I'm 100% sure that it is perfectly flawlessly "Asian"!!!
Not too sweet. Very soft and generously filled with fruits!

Any more baking tips? Yes! I know... I am naggy! LOL!

A few important things that I would like to mention before proceeding to the video and recipe:

1) This cake base has to be baked at 180°C for at least 15 mins. Not sure if your cake has been thoroughly baked? I suggest that you should bake the cake slightly more for another 1-2 minutes because it is always better to over-bake the cake a little than to under-bake it.

2) It is a must to remove the cake immediately from the baking tray and remove the attached baking paper after about 5 mins of cooling because this step avoids condensation at the base of the cake.

3) Be patient! You must wait for the cake to be cooled completely before rolling it with cream and fruits. And the rolled cake has to be thoroughly chilled in the fridge for at least 3 hrs or overnight before slicing and serving it.

Enough of blah blah blah now? I know... I am so so naggy! LOL! Here's a video showing how I baked and rolled my Swiss roll. Thanks Bensound for the music in my video.

My work mates who had this cake said that it tastes like professionally made... Thank you thank you!!! The cake is so good that I have promise one of my colleagues that I will bake this cake for her again. ke ke...

A truly must-bake if you like Asian fruity Swiss rolls!!!

Like my videos and recipes? To get the latest updates, you can follow me at either my Facebook at here or here or my Instagram @zoebakeforhappykids

Here's the recipe that is adapted from here and here.

IMPORTANT: Please use the exact weight and make sure that all ingredients are at room temperature.
Make one Swiss roll (unrolled size: 35 x 25 cm / 10 x 14 inches)

For the cake:

140g egg whites - about 4 large but please use exact weight.
80g caster sugar

60g egg yolks - about 4 large but please use exact weight.
50g milk
50g vegetable oil, preferably something neutral tasting
1/2 tsp vanilla paste or extract

70g cake flour
10g cornflour
3/4 tsp baking powder

Preheat oven to 180°C / 350°F. Line baking tray with baking paper.

For A:
Using an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites in lowest speed for at least 10 mins to stabilise the egg white mixture.

While beating, proceed to B.

For B:
In a large mixing bowl, combine egg yolks, milk and oil and use a hand whisk to mix until combined. Then, whisk in vanilla paste or extract.

For C:
Combine all in C. Sift mixture C into mixture B and use a hand whisk to mix until all are well-incorporated. Set aside.

Back to A:
Increase beating speed to the next higher speed. While beating, add sugar gradually. Increase beating speed to the next higher speed and continue to beat until stiff peaks form. The egg white mixture should be very smooth with tiny bubbles. Do not over-beat the mixture or use too high speed to beat the mixture.

Combine A+B and C:
Using a hand whisk or a spatula, gently fold in the egg whites to the egg yolks mixture in 3-4 batches. It is ok to mix the 1st batch of egg white more vigorously into the egg yolk mixture but the subsequent portions must be folded in very gently. Make sure that most of the white is not visible after folding.

Pour batter into the prepared baking tray. Use a spatula to spread the batter evenly and gentle tap the filled tray on the kitchen top to remove any large bubble. Bake for 15 mins or until the cake is well risen and fully cooked.

When done, remove cake (with its baking paper) from the tray immediately and transfer it onto a wire rack to cool. After about 5 mins of cooling, flip the cake onto a clean baking paper and remove the used baking paper at its bottom. Allow the cake to cool completely.

For the filling:
150 ml to 250 ml** (10 tbsp to 1 cup) whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla paste or extract
250g (one punnet) firm and ripe strawberries***, washed and hulled

** I have used 150ml whipping cream and this amount is just right for me but if you like your Swiss roll to be filled with more whipped cream, you can increase the amount up to 250ml. I also prefer to add NO SUGAR into the cream especially if the fruits are already naturally sweet. Agree? If you think that your cake is not sweet enough, you can always your cake with a dust of icing sugar. Isn't this better than making your cake too sweet?

***Variations: You can replace strawberries with fresh or canned mangoes, peaches or apricots or cherries or any berries. Thoroughly drained and blotted dry if you are using the canned fruits.

To assemble:
Using an electric mixer or a cream whipper, whip cream and vanilla until stiff peaks form.

Place cake with your preferred side down (please read the above baking points and tips that I have mentioned before the recipe) on a clean baking paper. The side down will eventually be the outside of the cake. Use a knife to trim off about 0.5 cm from both the shorter sides of the cake.

Spread thin layer of cream evenly on the cake, keeping about half of the cream to top the strawberries later.

Select 5-6 small strawberries and do not cut them. Then, cut the rest of the strawberries into halves. Arrange the small whole strawberries along one short end that is closer to you and arrange the strawberry halves onto the remaining cake but leaving the last 5-7 cm end of the cake that is away from you with no fruits. Too complicated? Please watch my above video.

Spread the remaining cream on the strawberries and also the gaps in-between them. 

Roll the cake from the shorter end (that is closer to you) along the longer side to form a Swiss roll.

Wrap in clean baking paper (if required to prevent the cake skin from sticking onto the cling wrap) and then in cling wrap and allow the cake to firm up into its shape for at least 3 hr or overnight in the fridge.

Trim off both sides of the cake. Slice and serve. Enjoy!!!

Happy Baking
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  1. Zoe, your chiffon swiss roll is gorgeous!

  2. it looks so pretty with all the strawberries inside. I have had loads of swiss roll disasters the filling tends to ooze out or I end up with the sponge splitting :(.

  3. They look so pretty, just like how your bakes look like!

  4. I tried, turned out soft & fluffy but the "skin" stick to the patchment paper, any advise. End up the swiss roll turned "naked". Can advise pls how to have the "skin" stay intact with the roll.

    1. Hi Rowena, When did you lose your cake skin? The skin is usually lost when the cake is too wet or under baked? If you are chilling the cake with fruits, the skin of your cake is most likely to peel.

  5. Looks wonderful. Topped with my favorite strawberry. This should be tasty.

  6. Hi Zoe, you cake is gorgeous. You mentioned that after 5 mins out of the oven, one should peel off the grease proof paper. Do you then place the cake on a new piece of grease proof paper with the top of the baked skin facing UP and the peeled side of the cake (bottom) facing/touching the new grease proof paper? Hope you understand what I mean.
    Do I have to cover the cake whilst waiting for it to cool?
    Thank you

    1. Hi, Yes that you have to flip the cake onto a clean baking paper and remove the used baking paper after 5 mins of cooling. Then, allow the cake to cool completely. Do not cover the cake while it is cooling. After cooling, I have placed my cake with its baked (golden brown) side facing down on the baking paper and apply the cream and strawberry on the pale side but you can do this step in anyway that you like. Cheers!

  7. How long do you usually let your cakes cool for before you put on the whipping cream? Do you just leave it out in the kitchen or is it possible to clingfilm it and refrigerate?

    1. Yes, please allow the cake to cool completely to room temperature before applying the whipped cream. I placed it on a wire rack at room temperature with no cover. Covering the cake will cause it to have condensation. Cheers!

  8. Hi Zoe! I tried this last night! Was a big success! Except my pan was too long and I had to bake it with a gap in the oven door! Which was a blessing coz I think my oven is 'too hot'. Thanks again for this keeper of a recipe!

    1. Hi Angie, Happy to know that you like this recipe :)

  9. Hello,

    I saw the recipe calls for Corn Flour. Is this correct?

    1. Yes, I have used corn flour in this recipe.

  10. Oh Zoe, this recipe is so good... I'm a new baker and I followed your instructions and exact ingrendents.. my 1st swiss roll turns up very good with very little cracks and not too sweet!!" Thank you for sharing your reciepe!!"