Nutella-Cream Cheese Sponge Cake Roll

Having received another request to make a cake- I thought it’s the perfect time to revisit another sponge cake variety.  Something filled with Nutella, rolled and then dusted with powdered sugar sounds good right?

I can't even recall the last time I made a sponge cake roll.  All my sponge cakes are either in round, rectangular, fluted, spring form or Madeleine pan or just piped like lady fingers.  I don't have anything against rolls.  They’re awesome; I roll my Brazo de Mercedes as well.  But truth be told sponge cake rolls tend to dry and those little cracks are tell-tale signs of that inevitability or they just plain crack whenever.  I saw it happen to my homeboy Tyler when he made his Buche de Noel at a holiday episode of Iron Chef.

So yeah, it can happen to anybody.  I’m just saying that cracks shouldn’t stop you from making the cake.  It's like a way of rolled sponge cake life- even as we try every possible trick to make a perfect roulade. Do I sound defensive?  Well I can only try to minimize the cracks but who knows, I may even get lucky and come up with a perfect one.  
So I didn't get lucky- I have a minor crack somewhere- like a straight line which is not so bad.  For sure I can do it if I'll add butter or oil but then- it's not sponge cake anymore.  And I'm really more concerned about the texture and the taste.  Cracks can be masked with chocolate ganache or other frosting and a dusting of sieved powdered sugar on the towel where the cake is transferred from the sheet pan to cool sort prevents sticking.  

For this particular recipe, I opted for the simple powdered sugar dusting with a Nutella filling which I whisked with cream cheese to cut down on the sweetness and a couple of drops of banana extract for a little twist. 
Nutella-Cream Cheese Sponge Cake Roll
6 extra large eggs, separated
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 tsp Madagascar vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

3/4 pkg softened cream cheese
1 cup Nutella spread
1 tsp banana extract (optional)
 Whisk together until creamy- set aside 

Place egg whites in a large bowl; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Line a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with parchment paper then spray the top with baking spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high speed for 5 minutes or until thick and lemon-colored. Gradually beat in sugar. Stir in the almond extract and vanilla
Sift flour and salt together twice; gradually add to yolk mixture and mix until incorporated  
In a large bowl with clean beaters, beat egg whites on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold into batter.
Spread evenly into prepared pan.
    Bake at 350° for 12-15 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched in center.
    Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Invert onto a kitchen towel dusted with 1 tablespoon confectioners'sugar.
Gently peel off parchment paper. Roll up cake in the towel starting with a short side.
Cool completely on a wire rack.
Unroll cake; spread Nutella-Cream Cheese mixture evenly over cake to within 1/2 in. of the edges.  Roll up again (I used wax paper this time).
Place seam side down on a serving platter. 
Dust with sieved powdered sugar and slice using a serrated knife to serve.


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