"This make-ahead cake is based on an old favorite: a jelly roll my mother used to bake. It was simple but delicious-a moist vanilla sponge cake filled with raspberry jam. I love the flavors of autumn, so I worked on a new kind of jelly roll that would be perfect for fall. I made a cake with pumpkin puree and spiced it with cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Then, in place of jelly, I filled it with a mixture of whipped cream, mascarpone and crystallized ginger. The combination of the spicy ginger, sweetened cream and pumpkin cake is absolutely delicious! And the best part is that it can be made a few days ahead: Just cover and refrigerate. It's a showstopper dessert, and you can be cool and relaxed when you serve it."
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 13-by-18-by-1-inch sheet pan. Line the pan with parchment paper and grease and flour the paper.
In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt and stir to combine. Place the eggs and granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light yellow and thickened. With the mixer on low, add the pumpkin and slowly add the flour mixture, mixing just until incorporated. Finish mixing the batter by hand with a rubber spatula. Pour into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake the cake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the top springs back when gently touched.
While the cake is baking, lay out a clean, thin cotton dish towel on a flat surface and sift the entire 1/4 cup of confectioners' sugar evenly over it. (This will prevent the cake from sticking to the towel.) As soon as you remove the cake from the oven, loosen it around the edges and invert it squarely onto the prepared towel. Peel away the parchment paper. With a light touch, roll the warm cake and the towel together (don't press!) starting at the short end of the cake. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
Meanwhile, make the filling. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the mascarpone, confectioners' sugar and cream together for about a minute, until light and fluffy. Stir in the crystallized ginger and salt.
To assemble, carefully unroll the cake onto a board with the towel underneath. Spread the cake evenly with the filling. Reroll the cake in a spiral using the towel as a guide. Remove the towel and trim the ends to make a neat edge. Dust with confectioners' sugar and serve sliced.
Make-Ahead Plan: Bake, fill and roll the cake, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Dust with confectioners' sugar just before serving.