When baking and grilling come together something magical happens. This Grilled Strawberry Cream Cake Roll is such a delicious way to end an outdoor meal as the summer sun lingers over the horizon.
Bright and sweet strawberries are one of Norway’s most sought after delicacies in July. The climate and longer days allow the berries to slowly ripen, producing some of the best on offer.
Some will be savored as they are, some will be doused with cream, some will feature in salads and meals, some will turn into jams and condiments, while others will accentuate and adorn luscious cakes.
With this dessert, they are wrapped in a soft vanilla cake with a filling of cream cheese. The cake is rolled to reveal swirls of red and white against its golden exterior. While the cake can certainly be eaten as is, it takes on a whole new texture and flavor when placed on the grill.
As the hot grill sears the cake, it crisps and caramelizes, becoming toasty and soft all at the same time. The sweetness of the strawberries melts into the boldness of the cream cheese filling. A simple cake roll becomes something else entirely, with char marks to showcase its transformation. It’s a beautiful way to celebrate the season and outdoor cooking, where anything can be grilled including dessert.
Grilled Strawberry Cream Cake Roll (Grillet rullekake med krem og jordbær)
For the cake:
- 6 large eggs at room temperature, separated
- ½ cup (100 g) plus 1/3 cup (65 g) granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup (60 ml) water
- 150 g (1 ¼ cup) all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
For cream filling:
- 7 ounces (200 g) cream cheese
- ¼ cup (30 g) confectioners’ sugar
- ¼ cup (60 ml) crème fraiche
- 1 cup (240 ml) strawberries, sliced
Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line a 15 x 12 inch (38 x 30 cm) rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, beat together the egg yolks, ½ cup (100 g) of the granulated sugar, vanilla and water until light and fluffy. Add the flour mixture and stir until well blended.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites on medium until foamy. Gradually add the remaining 1/3 cup (65 g) of granulated sugar, a little at a time, then increase the speed to medium-high, and whip until stiff and glossy peaks form. Using a spatula, gently fold the meringue into the cake batter until combined. Spread the batter in the prepared baking sheet to form an even rectangle. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave in the pan for 5 minutes. Roll the cake with the parchment paper from the short side to form a log. Let cool while rolled up to help the cake keep its shape.
For the cream filing, in a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and crème fraiche. Let sit for a couple of minutes.
Gently roll out the cooled cake. Spread the cream filling all the way to the edges. Top with the strawberry slices to create an even layer. Roll the cake back up again without the parchment paper, being careful to keep the filling intact. Gently slice the cake into 8 equal pieces. Set aside until ready to grill.
Preheat the grill to medium-high or 400ºF (200ºC).
Place the cake slices directly on the grill plates and cook for about 1 minute or until
golden brown. Carefully turn the cakes and cook for another minute or until golden brown. Remove from the grill and serve immediately while warm.
*This is a great cake to make ahead of time before you grill, but you can also bake the cake in a grill, such as the Weber SmokeFire, at 350ºF (180ºC) for 15 to 20 minutes instead of in the oven.