We’ve just moved to a new apartment. The hustle of packing and unpacking lasted for a few days or maybe a week, although at one point seemed like it was never going to end, it did. Now we are surrounded again with our furniture, books, paintings and most importantly – toys. Ok maybe there is a random unpacked box that may remain unpacked for the next move, but hey, no one is perfect, even the ones who have a history of moving around the World every few years.
On the scale of stress moving stands quite high and knowing that I try to find some beauty in it as well. Well maybe not particularly in the packing and unpacking part but for example, arranging well known pieces of our household into a completely new space is the part that I fully enjoy. That kept me awake until very late the other night, unpacking paintings and finding the perfect spot for each and every one, incorporating our own history onto our new blank walls. I decided a while ago that home is where we are, but parts of our houshold that fly across the world a few times with us and have their own story to tell and bring memories every time I look at them – help a lot as well.
The only tricky part with new places is that they might come with new white goods, like for example, the new oven! The same one that severely burned a dinner, a pie and one batch of muffins in the same evening. This is what I call – the stress of moving house! There is a very simple explanation but that very evening I was on my own (very inconveniently my husband was away on a business trip for a few days) facing the dark and mute glass door of my new gas oven. The key word here is the gas. As much as I have come across gas ovens in the professional kitchens I never used one at home. Also I should mention that I have a habit of not reading the instructions ever – or at least not until this incident. That evening I had a complete panic attack, with only one thought in my head – that I will not be able to bake anything in this oven never, ever again. There was no adult to help with this craziness and it was hard but I managed to compose myself and used the 1 % of brain cells that wasn’t effected by evil panic attack cells and grabbed the thick manual. And it was all there. Which button to press, which one to turn, what temperature to use, oh the absolute relief. From the frozen numbness of my brain I got the message – everything will be just fine. And that is how this roulade emerged. If you want to test any oven, sponge would be the one delicate thing to bake and that will tell you what kind of oven you are dealing with. It turns out, this one wasn’t so bad after all. Thank you my new gas oven, after a rough start, we are going to be a good friends.
Spelt flour roulade
5 free range eggs
5 tablespoons raw sugar
5 tablespoons white spelt flour
100 gr raw sugar
130 gr grounded raw almonds
50 gr dark chocolate
150 gr rhubarb and strawberry jam (or jam of your choice)
In a small pot and on a low temperature dissolve sugar. Add grounded almonds and chocolate and take off the heat the moment the chocolate is melted. Leave aside to cool. This filling can also be made the previous day, all you need to do is to take it out of the fridge half and hour before use to warm up to room temperature.
Sponge cakes were not really my thing until I realised that I am baking lot of deserts which include some kind of sponge. There are many out there but the simple ones that almost don’t call for a recipe – are my favourite. The ones that you don’t need to use your scale for and include only three ingredients.
Separate egg yolks from egg whites into two different bowls. Mix egg yolks with sugar until pale and fluffy. Leave aside and with clean beaters beat the egg whites adding a pinch of salt first. The trick that I use, is to beat both mixtures for the same length of time: If I need to beat the egg whites for 5 minutes to gain the wanted consistency, I’ll do the same with the egg yolks. It works perfectly for this desert. Combine egg whites with egg yolk mixture slowly adding the flour as well. Try not to beat the new mixture too much and keep the air in the egg white which will help to raise the sponge. Spread the batter into a baking tin size – 23 x 36 (which is the size quarter of the sheet pan ), lined with baking paper and bake for 15 minutes on 150C.
Take out the sponge and after removing the baking sheet lay gently onto a working top. The day before I decided to bake spelt flour roulade and after visiting the market and finding some perfectly good rhubarb I made a jam. Rhubarb goes really well with strawberries so I didn’t have a dilemma about what it is going to be. I make this jam quite often and always just a jar or two, so every time I make it, it feels like a special treat.
You can use your favourite jam, it’ll work for sure. Spread a thin layer of jam on the sponge and follow with almond and chocolate filling. Roll carefully and wrap with clean tea towel or baking sheet and leave overnight in the fridge. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.