Recipe courtesy of Heather Baird

Surprise Pumpkin Cake Roll

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 2 hr 15 min (includes chilling and cooling times)
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 8 servings
Try this impressive and fun pumpkin roulade as a scrumptious end to your next fall gathering. Fresh kiwi pieces and whole clementine oranges are assembled inside to reveal a pumpkin surprise when the cake is sliced.



Buttercream and Décors:


Special equipment:
7 disposable piping bags; a large open star decorator piping tip; a small leaf decorator piping tip; an 1/8-inch round decorator piping tip
  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 15-by-10-inch jelly roll pan with cooking spray and line it with parchment paper.
  2. Place the egg yolks in a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment. Set the mixer to medium speed and gradually add 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar. Increase to high speed and beat until the eggs are lightened in color. 
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until foamy. Gradually add the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and beat on high until stiff peaks form. Set aside. 
  4. With the mixer running on medium speed, add the oil, milk, extract, zest, spice, salt and orange food color to the egg yolk mixture. Mix well until combined. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the flour and mix using a rubber spatula until just combined. Add a third of the beaten egg whites to the mixture and fold to combine. Add the remaining egg whites and gently fold to combine. 
  5. Sprinkle a tea towel with the confectioners’ sugar. 
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth with an offset spatula to level. Bake until the sponge cake is springy and lightly brown around the edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Immediately turn the cake out onto the prepared tea towel. Roll up loosely and let cool completely.  
  7. For the buttercream and decors: In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix together the butter and confectioners’ sugar. Begin on low speed until crumbly, and then increase to high and beat for 3 minutes until smooth and fluffy. 
  8. Add the vanilla extract and beat again for another minute. If you find the buttercream is too stiff, you may add milk or heavy cream 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture is spreading consistency. Place about 2 cups of buttercream in a disposable piping bag. 
  9. Divide the remaining frosting into 4 bowls. Tint each bowl of frosting with each of the food colors: red, yellow, orange and green. Transfer the red, yellow and orange frostings each to a separate disposable piping bag with a 1/2-inch hole snipped in the end. Divide the green frosting between 2 piping bags: one fitted with a small leaf tip, and the other fitted with a 1/8-inch round tip. 
  10. Slice 2 large edges off of each piece of kiwi, avoiding the seeded white center as best you can. Remove the seeds and any of the white center from the pieces using a small paring knife. Cut each of the pieces in half.  
  11. Assemble the cake: Unroll the sponge cake and pipe some of the untinted frosting on the cake. Spread evenly. Beginning about 1 inch from the end of the curled edge, place the kiwi halves upright into the frosting. Pipe rows of frosting on each side of the kiwi until the frosting is the same height as the cut pieces of fruit. Place the peeled clementines on top of the kiwi with the stem ends toward the open ends of the sponge roll. Use more frosting to fill in the gaps around the clementines. Roll the fruit into the cake and trim the edge of the sponge so that no seam remains and the 2 ends of the sponge cake meet. Roll the assembled sponge cake in parchment paper and a layer of plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes. 
  12. Spread a large sheet of plastic wrap on a work surface. Pipe red, yellow and orange stripes of frosting side-by-side on the plastic wrap so that all 3 colors touch each other. Roll the frosting into the plastic sausage-style and snip one end. Place the frosting roll in a large piping bag fitted with a large open star tip. Squeeze the frosting out onto a test plate until all 3 colors extrude evenly.  
  13. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and pipe a fat, undulating rope down the top center of the cake; immediately top with the sprinkles. Use the reserved green frosting bag fitted with the 1/8-inch round decorator tip to pipe vines on top of the center décor. Use the green frosting bag fitted with the leaf tip to pipe leaves around the vines. Trim the ends from the cake roll using a serrated knife to reveal the kiwifruit and clementine "pumpkin" inside the filled cake. 
  14. Keep the cake refrigerated until ready to serve. Cut the cake chilled for the neatest slices.