New Forest roulade

This recipe features in the December edition of Hampshire Life magazine with wine matches from The knackered Mother’s Wine Club.

This is my local take on a Black Forest roulade. I have fond childhood memories of hunting for porcini below the oak trees of the New Forest, the spirit of which I’ve tried to capture within the decoration. The oak leaves are cinnamon tuilles, the acorns are chocolate-dipped marzipan and the porcini are made from honey gingerbread. The roulade freezes really successfully, so you can make it a couple of weeks in advance for a faff-free finish to Christmas lunch.

Serves 12

For the roulade:

  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 180 g caster sugar
  • 180 g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), melted
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar
  • 180 g spiced blackberry & apple jam
  • 300 ml double cream, softly whipped

For the whipped ganache:

  • 180 g double cream
  • 180 g dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 handful flaked almonds
  • 1 handful salted pistachios, crushed
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160 fan), gas 4 and oil and line a 38 cm x 25 cm swiss roll tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. Whip the egg whites with an electric whisk until they form stiff peaks. Set aside.
  3. Use the electric whisk to whip the egg yolks with the sugar in a separate bowl for 4 minutes or until the mixture holds its shape for a few seconds before flattening out again.
  4. Fold in the melted chocolate, followed by a third of the egg white. When most of the streaks have gone, fold in the rest of the egg white, followed by the cocoa powder.
  5. Carefully scrape the mixture into the prepared tin and level with a palette knife. Bake for 18 minutes or until the top feels firm in the centre. Leave to cool completely in the tin.
  6. Dust a large sheet of greaseproof paper with icing sugar, then turn the cake out on top. Peel away the lining paper. Spread the cake with jam and whipped cream, then use the greaseproof paper to help you roll the roulade, starting from one of the short edges. Transfer to a serving platter.
  7. To make the whipped ganache, heat the double cream until it just starts to simmer. Put the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl, then pour over the cream and leave to stand for 5 minutes. Stir together slowly with a spatula until smoothly combined, then leave to stand for 30 minutes.
  8. Whip the chocolate ganache with an electric whisk on medium speed until mousse-like. Spread it all over the roulade and use a skewer to create the bark effect. Decorate with pistachio ‘moss’ and flaked almond ‘oyster mushrooms’.
  9. Chill and serve within 48 hours. Alternatively, chill to set the ganache, then wrap in four layers of clingfilm and freeze for up to 3 weeks. Defrost in the fridge for 24 hours before serving.

Follow these links for full instructions on how to make the porcini, oak leaves and acorns:

New Forest producers:

Eggs – Fluffets Farm

Fordingbridge, 07887 654291

Double cream – H G Witt & Son

Fordingbridge, 07714 768974

H G Witt facebook page

Spiced blackberry & apple jam – Real Jam & Chutney Co

Woodlands, 07973 285580

I love writing the Christmas recipes for Hampshire Life magazine. The inspiration behind this year’s menu came from three distinctive landscapes of the county: the waterways of the River Test; the hills and hedgerows of the South Downs; and the ancient woodlands of the New Forest. To explore the rest of the menu, follow these links:

Test Valley trout ceviche

Southdowns lamb crown

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